Ten common cleaning misconceptions

If you’re going to do something, do it properly. Don’t let these common misconceptions derail your spring-cleaning efforts!

1. If it smells clean, it must be clean

A clean bathroom shouldn’t smell like lemons or potpourri. The ultimate test is if it doesn’t smell like anything at all. Treating odours with perfumes and the occasional squirt of disinfectant doesn’t mean it’s clean. It means you’re hiding bacteria, and possibly other harmful pathogens, with deodoriser. You need to scrub at it with hot soapy water and good old-fashioned elbow grease.

2. Dusting isn’t necessary

Not dusting thoroughly can lead to poor air quality, allergies and asthma. Even if you don’t have allergies, dust is packed with dead skin cells, pet germs, dust mites, dirt, debris and even excrement!

3. Extra detergent makes clothes cleaner 

Excess suds can hold dirt and bacteria, getting caught up in areas that won’t always rinse clean, such as the collar, and creating a residue.

Will extra detergent make clothes cleaner? Photo: Stocksy

4. Vinegar is the best disinfectant

As far as vintage cleaning tips go, vinegar always gets a mention, touted as a cheap and green alternative to commercial products on the supermarket shelves. Don’t believe everything your grandmother told you! Vinegar contains 5 per cent acetic acid, so it may not be suitable for every surface. Also, it kills some bacteria, but does nothing against salmonella and other household pathogens. Yes, not as great as you think, even when mixed with its best mate baking soda!

5. Bleach can be used on any surface

Chlorine bleach may kill germs quickly, preventing mould and mildew, but it’s highly toxic and less effective at getting rid of stubborn build-up. It’s also heavily corrosive and shouldn’t be used on porous materials or metal. Also, mixing with hot water can actually stain white surfaces, causing them to turn yellow. For a gentler alternative, try diluted hydrogen peroxide, which can be bought from supermarkets at a 3 per cent concentration.

6. Professional cleaners are overrated

Even the most pristine house would benefit from a professional clean once or twice a year. Allergens, germs and soil can accumulate on carpets, curtains and windows and are difficult to remove without a bit of professional help.

7. Antibacterial products are the best way to clean

Antibacterial agents don’t necessarily work better than regular soaps. In fact, they can actually promote infections. Their widespread use may lead to bacterial resistance, even aiding the development of superbacteria. Triclosan, one of the most common chemicals found in antibacterial products, has even been pinpointed in a recent study as promoting staph. Of course, antibacterial products do have their place, but be wary of overuse.

What happens after you get your carpet professionally cleaned? Photo: Stocksy

8. Steam cleaning can cause mouldy carpet

When you have your carpet professionally cleaned, it usually stays damp for a day or two after. This does not cause mould, despite the musty smell. Dirt promotes mould growth much more than humidity. As well as containing spores, soil is a hygroscopic material, readily soaking up any nearby moisture. If you want to curb the risk of mould, a regular steam clean is a good idea.

9. All green products are completely safe 

A growing number of Australians are buying eco-friendly cleaning products – made from natural, non-toxic, biodegradable ingredients instead of synthetic agents. Yet just because the ingredients are plant-based or natural doesn’t necessarily mean they’re safe. The market goes largely unregulated – so be wary of what’s in the bottle. Many contain some fraction of synthetic chemicals, such as the cancer-causing compound called 1,4-dioxane – and natural ingredients such as coconut diethanolamide and limonene can cause allergies. Green or not, always check the cleaning product’s safety information before using them.

10. Cleaning takes all day

Sure, spring cleaning sounds incredibly arduous and stressful, but deep cleaning needn’t be seen as a twice-yearly, all-day marathon event. If you take care of your house periodically, setting aside time for upkeep, you won’t become overwhelmed.

Cleaning doesn’t have to be a nightmare. Photo: Stocksy

 

Author: Kathleen Lee-Joe

Source : http://www.domain.com.au/

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Sikh Man Who Removed Turban To Help Injured Boy Surprised When Friendly Strangers Return The Favor

After a 22-year-old Sikh man removed his turban to help an injured boy, a handful of friendly strangers acted quickly to return the favor.

Harman Singh, who lives in Auckland, New Zealand, heard screeching wheels and ran outside to find that Daejon Pahia had been hit by a car.

“I saw a child down on the ground and a lady was holding him. His head was bleeding, so I unveiled my turban and put it under his head,” Singh told The New Zealand Herald. “I wasn’t thinking about the turban. I was thinking about the accident and I just thought, ‘He needs something on his head because he’s bleeding.’ That’s my job — to help. And I think anyone else would have done the same as me.”

The turban, or dastaar, is an “integral” part of the Sikh faith that is typically onlyremoved in the privacy of one’s home, according to the Sikh Coalition.

As television news crews traveled to the Singh’s home for interviews, the world saw a peek into the man’s accommodations — which were plain and lacking furniture.

Inspired by concerned comments from viewers, the staff at the Good News Networkgot in touch with a local furniture store owner and surprised Singh with a truckload of new furniture for his apartment. Singh said, through tears, “This the biggest surprise of my life.”

 

Source – http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2015/05/23/harman-singh-furniture_n_7424188.html

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How Environmental Exposure May Affect Your Child

Keeping Your House Clean Without Harsh Chemicals

 

When you have a new baby, your house might seem a lot dirtier than it did before. The first time your little one stuffs a dust bunny or a desiccated housefly in her mouth is often a low point in parenting.

Before you start scrubbing every surface in sight, consider that obsessive cleaning with caustic household cleaners has its own drawbacks. Harsh household cleaners can affect a baby’s eyes, airways, skin, and more.

“Parents need to know that there can be a trade-off between a sterilized kitchen and theirbaby’s health,” says Sonya Lunder, MPH, a senior analyst at the Environmental Working Group in Washington, D.C.

There is good news. By making simple changes and practicing child-safe cleaning, you can keep your home clean without exposing your baby to unnecessary risks. For an exhausted mom, it’s a win-win: a healthier baby without loads of extra housework.

What’s the Problem With Household Cleaners?

Household cleaners with harsh ingredients don’t only kill germs and get out tough stains. They can affect your baby’s health in a number of ways.

  • Eczema. A baby’s skin is sensitive, and studies have found that irritants and allergens in household cleaners and detergents can cause skin irritation.
  • Airway irritation. Powerful fumes from household cleaners can irritate your baby’s airways, making allergy or asthma symptoms worse. Some cleaning chemicals in schools have been linked with higher rates of asthma, says Lunder.
  • Eye irritation. Household cleaner fumes can also irritate your baby’s eyes, causing redness and watering. If splashed directly into the eyes, some cleaners can cause serious damage.
  • Allergies. Some researchers believe that having a home that’s too clean can increase the long-term risk of allergies in a child. It’s called the hygiene hypothesis. Without some exposure to germs, a child’s immune system might not develop normally. Instead, it becomes hypersensitive and begins to overreact to harmless allergens, like pollen or dander.
  • Poisoning. Every year, more than a million kids under age 5 swallow poisons like household cleaners, sometimes with devastating effects.
  • Unknown health effects. Some household cleaners have fragrances that contain chemicals like phthalates. While we don’t know what their health effects are for sure, some studies have found a possible connection between phthalates and disrupted hormone levels.

“What’s surprising to so many parents is that we don’t have good safety testing for a lot of the chemicals we use every day,” Kenneth Bock, MD, pediatric neurotoxicologist and codirector of the Rhinebeck Health Center in Rhinebeck, N.Y. “We don’t really know what they might be doing to our kids.” To be cautious, many parents try to reduce their use of household cleaners that contain harsh chemicals.

By R. Morgan Griffin

Source – http://www.webmd.com/

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‘Pray For Nepal’

“Pray For Nepal” has gone viral on social media after a 7.8 magnitude earthquake that killed over 2,400 people and injured almost 6,000 on April 25.

Among those who are asking the world to pray for Nepal is Sujan Shakya, 27, a Nepalese TV personality in Korea who appears on a talk show about non-Korean men living in Korea titled “Non-Summit,” according to Korea Times.

pray-for-nepalAfter the devastating earthquake, streets in parts of Kathmandu, a city of around 1.2 million people, were impassable because of tens of thousands of people having taken up residence there and not so much from earthquake damage, the New York Times reported.

A landlocked country in South Asia, Nepal has a population of about 27 million, making it the 41st most populous country in the world. With an area of 147,181 square kilometres, it is the 93rd largest country by land mass

On March 14, 2014, a 6.3 magnitude earthquake hit Japan, which recorded an 82.9km deep epicenter striking off the intersection between the islands of Kyushu, Honshu, and Shikoku. The epicenter was 13km north of Kunisaki-shi City in Oita Prefecture, Kyushu Island.

No significant damages, casualties, or tsunami warnings were reported after the 6.3 magnitude earthquake hit three of the four main islands of Japan although 6.0 to 6.9 magnitude earthquakes can be felt by the areas that are hundreds of kilometres away from the epicenter.

Moreover, no abnormalities were seen in the Shimane Nuclear Power Plant, which is hundreds of kilometres away from the epicenter after the earthquake.
Read more: http://en.yibada.com/articles/29368/20150426/pray-nepal-goes-viral-deadly-earthquake-over-2400-killed-6000.htm#ixzz3YaYDq8Wq

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