The kitchen and bathroom are the two places in the house that we associate most with bacteria and germs. In particular, the bathroom can be responsible for harbouring germs and quickly spreading them to other members of your household. Nevertheless, there are many simple things you can do to keep germs in the bathroom in check, and not all of them involve industrial strength chemicals. In light of recent events, those of us who design bathrooms will be thinking about how to avoid bathroom contamination in a more permanent way. In the meantime, here are some of the areas to look out for in your bathroom.
Where the Germs (and Viruses) Are
Think about all of the places in your bathroom where germs and viruses could be living – on the taps, in the sink, on handles, floors, towels, and toothbrushes. These are all the surfaces that regularly get touched or get wet. Informal studies have shown that, while most people assume the toilet is the worst offender, toothbrush holders are usually the dirtiest item in the bathroom.
Those Pesky Droplets
Beyond the fixtures and items that collect germs, a major problem is that a lot of what we do in the bathroom generates aerosols. Aerosols are the tiny droplets of liquid that hang in the air before settling onto surfaces. Everything from brushing your teeth, flossing, splashing water and flushing the toilet produces aerosols. In the future, fixtures and bathroom designs will be made to reduce or contain aerosols as much as possible.
What You Can Do Now
Unfortunately, there is no magic tool or cleaner that will make it easier to keep your bathroom clean. Wipe down the high-touch surfaces frequently. Try to keep the moisture level and humidity down by turning on the exhaust fan or opening a window. Give all items such as toothbrush holders, cups and caddies a thorough sanitizing periodically to prevent mould and bacteria from building up.
How Bathroom Design May Change
Designers are already working hard at rethinking public restrooms as we work to eliminate the threat of COVID 19 and future pandemics. Home bathroom design can also do with a change to incorporate more low-touch surfaces, fixtures that limit or capture aerosols, and designs that eliminate some of the places where pathogens tend to thrive. If you are considering a bathroom renovation, call us to talk about redesigning your bathroom to be healthier and more beautiful than ever.