What do you think is the dirtiest place in your bathroom? Take a guess. You’re way off the mark if you said it’s the toilet. Your toothbrush holder is the biggest breeding ground for bacteria. Many of them showed the presence of coliform, while others had a significant amount of staphylococcus. If that freaks you out, it’s intended to get you thinking about how to detox your bathroom.
One study shows that the bathroom may not even be the most germ-infested place in your home – the kitchen has the dubious honor there. But that’s statistics for you. Germs are harmful wherever they’re found and in whatever quantity.
Before we look at the germ factor, it’s good to know a little more about where and when bathrooms began.
History of Bathrooms
Archaeological evidence shows dedicated areas for communal and individual bathing in human settlements dating back nearly 3000 years. In ancient Mesopotamia, a system of clay pipes, sewers, and toilets was excavated. The world’s first known urban sanitation system has been found in Mohenjo-Daro and other Indus Valley sites. In medieval times, Europe saw the use of chamber pots emptied into rivers or cesspits.
Till the First World War, indoor toilets were not required by city building codes in London. Flush toilets were invented in the 19th century but were considered a luxury in private residences. Today, sophisticated hi-tech toilets with many features are common in highly developed societies such as Japan. The International Space Station uses advanced technology to align with the requirements in space.
Why Do Bathrooms Support Germ Growth?
Most of us are particular about hygiene and cleanliness in the washroom. You have taught your children to clean and tidy up after using the facilities.
The warm, moist environment is most suited to attract and support the growth and spread of various viruses, fungi, micro-organisms, bacteria, and insects.
If you have children and seniors in the home, they are most vulnerable to health problems caused by unhygienic conditions.
You ensure that you wipe down the surfaces and dry the floor, use strong cleaning products and disinfectants, drive foul smells and stale air out using an exhaust, and more. While your bathroom looks clean, fresh, and tidy, what lies hidden is the real problem.
Bathrooms become a harbor for old skincare products, date-expired medicines, and hair styling products that you don’t use anymore. Unfortunately, these items can pose a health hazard.
A majority of cleaning products are manufactured from chemicals. So, for example, the air freshener you blithely spritz around the washroom after every use may contain chemicals that could interfere with hormones.
You need a two-pronged approach to solve these issues. The first is a thorough deep cleaning, and the second is a detox approach to the entire space and all it contains.
Contact a well-established, local cleaning company with the experience and expertise to do a good job. The team has the equipment and the right products to tackle difficult chores such as cleaning the tub and hard-to-get-at places in your bathroom.
When you think of detoxing, it is not just something that can be done in a day. You may have to spend more time and effort initially, but it pays off in the end.
How To Detox Your Bathrooms
Detoxing your bathroom means you need to change some of your old, deeply ingrained habits radically. While this may be difficult initially, it soon becomes part of your new, detoxed lifestyle.
Get Rid Of: Take a long, leisurely look at everything you have in the bathroom. While it’s convenient to have a medicine cabinet in the bathroom, exposing unstable pharmaceuticals to fluctuating temperatures and humidity is hazardous. Keep your medicines in a cool, dry place elsewhere. Throw out the “loo-brary” if you’re someone who likes to read in the bathroom. Paper can deteriorate, and inks can release harmful chemicals. Old razors, jewelry, damp towels, and freebies swiped from hotel rooms are other No-No’s in a toxin-free bathroom.
Chemicals: Switch to more organic and natural products. Instead of a chemical-rich air freshener, use potpourri, essential oils, or flower-scented candles. Look at your shampoo, deodorant, soap, conditioner, and toothpaste labels. Research your local supermarket or nearby organic store for substitutes that will support a more healthy lifestyle.
Accessories: Your plastic shower curtains and bathmats look great, no doubt. But did you know that many plastics contain strong chemicals that react to heat in the bathroom? These products can enter your respiratory system and cause various allergies and diseases. Swap your PVC items with all-natural cotton curtains and rubber bathmats. Install a shower head filter to remove chlorine and heavy metals. Add plants to increase the oxygen and freshness and reduce the pollution inside your bathroom.
Cleaning Products: Instead of store-bought cleaning products switch to gentler, more effective ones that are easily available in your kitchen cupboard. Baking soda, vinegar, sea salt, lemon, and lime are just as good as any chemical cleaning agent. Look for more eco-responsible moisturizer brands, hand-wash, toilet cleaners, and cosmetics. You can switch to toothpaste and soaps made from natural ingredients and herbs. Use a mixture of vinegar and baking soda to clean grout on the floor and wall tiles.
Towels and Toilet Paper: Use smaller, quick-drying linen towels and robes instead of huge, soft Turkish ones. You can also buy pure cotton towels that dry fast and can be hung out in the sun. Your toilet paper is manufactured using strong chemicals such as bleach and chlorine that can be readily absorbed into the body. Another offender is your tampon. They contain artificial fibers such as rayon and polyester, chemical deodorants, and various additives. Look for 100% natural tampons that are biodegradable and free of chlorine and bleach.
Read The Labels: When you’re in the supermarket, don’t just rush through the aisles, grabbing stuff off the shelves and stuffing your cart. Instead, take the time to read every label on the back of a product carefully. Manufacturers are duty-bound to name every single ingredient that goes into the product. Avoid products containing SLS (sodium lauryl sulfate), triclosan, foaming agents, phthalates, talc, mineral oils, formaldehyde, preservatives, and other harmful chemicals.
Once you’re on the road to detoxification, it’s important to stay on it. You may find that organic and natural products are slightly more expensive and not easily available in your neighborhood supermarket or pharmacy. In addition, it may be difficult to convince others in the family about using these products. Whatever the hurdles you face, it’s worth it in the long run when you find that you and your family look and feel much healthier and refreshed after a visit to the bathroom.