by Bret Hanna

Some things in life require constant attention. These eight things require your attention every single week.

Toothbrush. Bacteria loves moist surfaces, and very few surfaces are more consistently moist than your toothbrush. As such, toothbrushes serve as magnets for germs and bacteria that are airborne in your bathroom. For a quick clean, soak the bristles in mouthwash for 30 to 60 seconds. For a more thorough clean, run your toothbrush through the dishwasher.

Smartphone/Cell Phone/Phone. Studies show that the average phone has 10 times more bacteria lurking on it than the average toilet. And there is an endless transfer cycle of that bacteria between your mouth and phone when using it for calls, and your hands, the device and every other thing you touch. That’s nasty. To keep that bacteria at bay, get an antibacterial coating for the phone. Or, get antibacterial wipes and use them often.

Vehicle Steering Wheel, Shift and Knobs. This one is easy. Regularly use disinfecting wipes to clean the surfaces that are touched inside your car. The concept is the same as washing hands on a regular basis, and certainly after they’ve come in contact with surfaces that are like petri dishes growing bacteria and germs (door knobs and handles, cabinet pulls, mass-transit anything, etc.).

Money. Paper money is infamous for spreading germs from person to person. Most people don’t think you can clean paper money, and they are correct. Consider ditching cash (or minimizing using it), and use plastic cards (which can be cleaned) or smart phones for money transactions.

Computer Keyboards and Mouse. These items can harbor myriads of germs and bacteria. Turn the computer off and wipe the keyboard and mouse with a damp disinfecting wipe. Be careful to not use a wipe that is too moist, because you don’t want liquid disinfectant getting in between the keyboard keys or the cracks of the mouse.

Keys. Keys, like money and other things held in the hand, can be filthy with germs and bacteria. Most keys can be cleaned with warm, soapy water.

Remote Control(s). Remotes are handled often by everyone in the house, so you’re not just interacting with the germs and bacteria that come from your hands. Wipe them down with disinfecting wipes, with particular attention to the buttons.

Kitchen Sponges and Dish Rags. All such items used in the kitchen can become filthy quickly. At least once a week, launder dish rags, and soak sponges in boiling water, run them through the dishwasher, or get them wet and put them in the microwave for a couple of minutes.