Protecting you and your family in the home: Hygiene FAQs

We all want to protect our homes from germs and viruses, but it can be difficult to know what to do. Read on to find out the answers to popular home hygiene FAQs.

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When it comes to protecting our homes, we want to make sure we are doing everything we can to ensure germs and viruses are eliminated and the risk of infection is low. Here we answer some of your questions surrounding home hygiene and viruses, making sure you keep yourself, and your family safe.

Do I need to sanitise letters and parcels after they’ve been posted?

Studies have shown that viruses can remain on surfaces like cardboard for around 24 hours. If you are concerned your post may be contaminated, it is worth adopting a ‘Open it, Read it, Bin it’ strategy in order to minimise risk. You can also use a disinfectant wipe to sanitise parcels to be on the safe side. Always make sure to wash your hands after handling mail.

Do I need to clean my letter box or post box?

Although the transmission of COVID-19 from your mailbox is very unlikely, you can clean your post box as a precaution. Use disinfectant wipes to wipe down the surfaces and be sure to wash your hands afterwards.

Do I need to clean my newspaper?

The likelihood of catching COVID-19 from paper is unlikely. However, with newspapers possibly being handled by others, removing the outer pages and leaving them for three days will eliminate any germs left on the paper. As always, it is important to wash your hands properly after handling outside objects.

Can I catch COVID-19 from dogs and cats?

Although some studies have shown that some domestic dogs and cats have tested positive for COVID-19, there is no evidence to suggest dogs and cats can spread the virus to humans.

It is recommended if you have COVID-19 or are at risk, to minimise the contact with animals. Basic hygiene should always be followed after handling animals, their food and toys, as well as avoiding kissing or licking. 

Can I stroke other animals? 

To minimise risk, it is advised not to stroke other animals. If you accidentally come into contact with other animals, wash your hands with soap for 20 seconds, or use a 60% alcohol-based hand sanitiser.

Can I reuse a disinfectant wipe?

Disinfectant wipes are single-use only and should be disposed of in a safe way after use. Once used, put in a closed bin and wash your hands afterwards.

Disclaimer: The information in this article is accurate at the time of publishing. However, as the situation surrounding COVID-19 continues to evolve, it’s possible that some guidance may have changed since publication. While Cleanipedia is trying to keep our content as up-to-date as possible, we also encourage readers to stay informed on news and recommendations by using GOV PH and DOH.

Originally published