1. TV remote
Many people watch TV while they absent-mindedly chew their fingernails, snack on food and flip through channels, leaving all kinds of bacteria on the remote. Make sure to sanitize the remote control regularly to prevent sickness.
2. Tub and shower
Your bathtub may have 100 times more bacteria than the trash can, according to an in-home bacteria study conducted by the Center for Hygiene and Health in Home and Community. The Hygiene Council recommends that showers and tubs be disinfected twice a week to get rid of dead skin cells left in the tub that can carry germs too.
3. Pet food dish
Most pet food dishes stay on the floor and do not get washed regularly.
4. Kitchen cloths and sponges
People frequently use sponges or cloths to wipe germs from surfaces in the kitchen. As a result, 70 percent of kitchen sponges in U.S. homes failed the hygiene test by having high levels of bacteria, according to the Hygiene Council. The council recommends running sponges through the dishwasher regularly and washing kitchen cloths on the hot cycle in the washing machine.
5. Microwave touch screen
This spot is notorious for not getting cleaned. Even though the food comes out cooked, the germs that can make you sick are left on the outside of the microwave for the next person to touch. It is important to wipe down the touch screen regularly, especially after cooking raw meat.
6. Light switches
Touching the light switch is practically unavoidable, but keeping it clean is not. The bathroom light switch can have as many germs as the trash bin. Disinfect light switches twice a week, or every day if a member of your household is sick.
7. Baby changing table
During diaper changes, the baby wipes container, the diaper packaging, the trash can and anything around the changing area get contaminated with bacteria through touching after handling a dirty diaper. The baby changing table area should be cleaned often.
8. Kitchen faucets
Typically people wash their hands after handling raw meat in the kitchen, but they touch the faucet to turn on the water and do not think about the bacteria that they leave. The Hygiene Council found more than half of faucets in American homes are covered in bacteria.
Sources: Chicago Tribune August 16, 2009