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Amidst the global coronavirus pandemic, more and more people are searching for the most effective ways to protect themselves and their families against the risk of getting ill. Folks are now consciously taking personal protective measures, such as wearing masks outdoors, cleaning and disinfecting their hands more frequently and avoiding crowded places as much as possible by, say, doing two-week’s worth of shopping in one go.
Well, buying copious amounts of toilet paper, however, won’t do much for you to stay safe. Instead, you need to take proactive actions and regularly disinfect surfaces at home and at the workplace on top of your additional personal hygiene efforts.
But how does disinfection differ from deep cleaning (and sanitising if you like), many may ask?
As often the above terms are used interchangeably, we’ve decided to make things clearer for you and explore the difference between sanitising and disinfecting in this post.
So if you:
…then, read on.
The main difference between disinfection and sanitisation is that the first process is designed to kill all harmful bacteria, viruses and fungi on surfaces, whereas the latter is associated with deep cleaning items and surfaces with a range of sanitising products that will remove dirt and germs, however, without the guarantee that all types of pathogens will be completely neutralised. In other words, using a said sanitiser will not necessarily kill 100% the virus, which causes COVID-19 disease, or eliminate certain bacteria, but it will only reduce a number of harmful microorganisms.
Let’s see, then, when deep cleaning and sanitisation are used, on one hand, and when disinfection is appropriate, on the other.
The general sanitising of floors, bathroom fixtures, items, food preparation surfaces, etc. can ensure that the above are clean and descaled, as well as common allergens and some types of bacteria are removed or reduced in number. The products used contain different types of cleaning agents, which, however, may not be effective against viruses, fungi and various types of dangerous bacteria.
Disinfectants are designed to kill completely all types of pathogens on a particular surface. The process is applied in medical facilities and labs, of course, in food production establishments and wherever there’s a need for increasing the safety of people in particular circumstances and environments. Still, we need to note here that depending on what the disinfectant contains, one particular product will be effective against a particular group of viruses or bacteria, but it may not be reliable against other types of pathogens.
We won’t get too scientific here, but it’s good to mention that there are different levels of disinfection, based on the main type of substance used to make a particular product. For instance, alcohol-based disinfectants are classed as intermediate to high-level disinfectants, depending on the percentage of ethyl or isopropyl alcohol the product contains. Lipid-enveloped viruses like the coronavirus and various bacteria will be killed with an alcohol-based disinfectant (above 60%).
Intermediate-level disinfectants, such as bleach and other chlorine-based products, are also effective against many types of pathogens, including fungi, viruses and bacteria. Oxidising agents like hydrogen peroxide are in the category of high-level disinfectants, along with aldehyde-based biocides. These are used for disinfecting medical equipment, for example, and can be applied against non-enveloped viruses (norovirus, rhinovirus), as well.
Low-level disinfectants can be in fact many types of all-purpose sanitisers that contain ammonium-based substances. These will have some antibacterial properties but will not be the first choice in the fight against fast-spreading viral diseases.
Last but not least, we should mention here the process of sterilisation and what it involves. Apart from chemical sterilisation that uses high-level disinfectants, items and surfaces can be sterilised by using irradiation, heat and steam. Again, sterilisation is used to ensure that medical devices and food preparation equipment are completely free of pathogens, especially to avoid health risks, regarding vulnerable groups of people (infants, hospital patients and so on).
But let’s go back to what you can do to disinfect your home (or your workplace, for that matter) during dire times of a global health-risk crisis that involves a highly-contagious virus being on the loose.
Well, cleaning your home regularly is important, in order to keep your indoor environment healthy and pleasant. Everyone knows this. And in the middle of a pandemic situation, this is vital even more so. Why? You see, disinfection is generally a follow-up health-prevention measure after you’ve first cleaned the items and surfaces in your home. Or in other words, you wouldn’t disinfect your kitchen worktop, covered in dry ketchup stains, without cleaning those, first, would you? Make a routine out of maintaining your property tidy and clean all the time so that you can disinfect certain areas and surfaces more effectively.
We are now offering a brand new service available in London and across England. you can book our Antiviral Sanitisation and Cleaning service, which uses non-toxic, bleach-free products that are effective against a number of highly-contagious viruses and dangerous bacteria. This is a high-demand and extremely sought-after service, performed by specially trained professionals, who have been cleared of any potential exposure to viral agents or any other contagious diseases. We, at Fantastic Services, are doing our bit in these challenging times, so if you need more information on how we can assist you to disinfect your property, just get in touch with us!
See how our antiviral sanitisation service can help you.
Did you find this article helpful? What do you do these days to keep your home a safer place? Please, share your thoughts with our readers in the comments below!
Image source: Source: shutterstock / Natali_ Mis, Danijela Maksimovic