There are a lot of threats in the world we live in, but who would imagine that most of them come from a lot of micro-organisms that can be harmful or deathly?
People are more likely to die because of a hospital acquired infection than by a traffic accident. Scary, right? This is why the cleaning industry is growing and becoming more important in our daily routine.
The real threat - disinfecting (killing) vs. cleaning (removing)
Around 15,000 different types of micro-organisms live in our body. Most of them are useful and harmless, actually we could not live without them!
There are many varieties of micro-organisms. As said before, a lot of them are really useful to us. But other examples like yeast, fungi, bacteria and viruses can impact out bodies in different ways to the point of causing damage, also known as virulence. Covid-19 is caused by a virus. Although viruses and bacteria have totally different characteristics they are often mixed up.
SARS-CoV-2 is the official name of the virus causing the actual pandemic of Covid-19. This virus is a Corona related type of virus, which is highly contagious and new to mankind. This is a clear example of what should be disinfected (killed) and not just cleaned (removed). The main cause of infection is through droplets caused by coughing, sneezing or heavy breathing of a contaminated person. This is why the best way to reduce infecting risk is to keep safe distance from one to another.
Micro-organisms survive on surfaces for a certain period of time, making everyone in contact with said surface vulnerable to acquire the virus. This is why the disinfection protocols and products are getting so much attention since the beginning of the year.
Is it clean enough or not?
Micro-organisms are invisible to the naked eye, this is way it is hard to determine if a surface is really safe because of previous disinfection procedures.
People feel the need to do something about this, especially when a highly contagious pathogen micro-organism (nowadays COVID-19) threatens our lives. Common sense makes everyone believe it's a good idea to disinfect excessively "to make sure the surface is safe". WRONG.
This is why disinfection protocols must be well-considered and excecuted, because excessive disinfection can make micro-organisms resistant to poorly used disinfection products.
Micro-organisms have an amazingly fast response and have learned to adapt to harmful situations, making the job of killing them harder and harder.
Door handles are the perfect example, even though they can be disinfected every hour, they become safe only to the first person that touches it after disinfection, all the others that come after are only safe if a non-contaminated person touches the handle.
Common disinfection mistakes
- Excessive disinfection even when the surface has not been touched at all, wasting time and resources.
- Wrong dilution of products.
- Insufficient disinfectant moist, leaving micro-organisms alive which translates to not disinfecting at all.
- Avoid cleaning before disinfecting, reducing the effectiveness of disinfectant components due some types of dirt.
- Disinfecting wet surfaces which cause dilution of the disinfectant.
Companies are in the need to develop health plans and protocols adapting themselves to the current situation. This is the new reality where cleaning and disinfecting have new meanings and applications. In this article we also have useful information regarding health plans and protocols to help your company endure this difficult reality.