Recently, I was lucky enough to get a sneak peek at a special (free!) guide from Clorox. It’s the What to Expect Healthy Home Guide, written in collaboration with the author of the What to Expect baby/pregnancy series of books. In the spirit of full disclosure, I never read the books. However, we’ve been plagued with serial colds here lately, so I was eager to read something on a healthy home and the avoidance of germs.
It should be noted, too, that I don’t generally obsess about germs. I wash my hands when I use the bathroom, when I change a diaper, when I clean the litter box, and before and after preparing food. Actually, the dryness of my hands would tell you that I am possibly a little fanatical about hand washing. But that’s basically it. I don’t lie awake in bed fearing invisible germs lurking on every surface, wondering what might be out to get me. But like I said, we’ve all been sick with something for several months now, so I figured a little home audit was a good idea.
The best news was right at the beginning, where I was reassured that my home probably wasn’t as bad as I feared. Well that’s a relief! I’d hate to find out that it was actually a cesspool of germs!
The booklet is nice and short at only 16 pages long, so it doesn’t overwhelm you with information you don’t need, just the basics that are important to your average person. It’s divided into two parts – one for a healthy home and one for keeping your family healthy. The home section is broken down by room with good advice on how to keep the bedroom, bathroom, playroom and kitchen safe. For instance, in the playroom, there are suggestions for wiping down hot spots (walls, shelves, drawer handles, etc) and to regularly clean toys in either the dishwasher or the sink, and so on. The kitchen section isn’t just about surfaces, it also offers good food safety guidelines, such as temperatures for both cold and hot foods, label reading, and avoiding the plague of double dipping (eww!).
In the family section, one of my favorite tips is included – to cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing, BUT using the inside of your elbow instead of your hand (which will then spread germs to everything you play with!). It also gives good guidelines on hand washing, and how to stay healthy when you’re out in public.
On the one hand, you can tell that this was a collaboration with Clorox because the amount of times they mention disinfecting wipes is highly noticeable. However, blatant advertising or not, it’s still a collection of very good advice. Most of it is stuff you probably already know but it’s a good reminder, especially in the cold and flu season, to actually follow through on all of it, because knowing the safety rules is useless if it’s not in practice!
If you’d like your own copy, it’s available free of charge from the What To Expect website.