A Fresh Start as the Seasons Change
It's your favorite time of year: spring cleaning. (Cue the silence.)
Turns out, cleaning has been shown to improve physical and emotional health. A space that is clean and organized promotes productivity and reduces stress. Spring time is also a good time to look at the safety of your space to make sure it is a healthy environment for you and your family, and reassess unhealthy habits that may have cropped up over the winter.
Tackle your clutter and clean your way to good health with these tips.
Start in the Kitchen
Germs are unwelcome houseguests, lurking in garbage cans, the dishwasher and the inside of your washing machine. Clean out the fridge to reduce your risk of foodborne illness.
Pitch the processed foods in your pantry and commit to eating clean. Cleaning up your diet means eating foods that are as close as possible to their natural state and not overly processed. For example, choose fresh vegetables instead of vegetable chips.
Tackle the Bathroom
Organize your medicine cabinet and get rid of expired medications. This includes medications that have changed color or smell bad. Heat and moisture can cause medication to go bad before the expiration date. Make sure anything you keep is stored in a dry, cool place. Most importantly, make sure all medication is out of the reach of children.
Then, turn to your makeup. Dispose of any skin care products and makeup that have expired. Purge products that irritate your skin. Clean your brushes and applicators to get rid of bacteria and product buildup. Purchase new mascara at least once a year.
Beat the Battle Against Allergies
Goodbye allergens! When you are deep cleaning your house, make sure to dust all surfaces, including the tops of ceiling fans, picture frames and decor. This may help reduce your allergy symptoms.
Spring Into Safety
Spring is a perfect time to take inventory of the safety of your space. Replace the batteries in your smoke detector. Replace and/or clean any air purifier, HVAC and water filters. It is also good to be mindful of the harmful chemicals that may be in your home. Make sure any dangerous or toxic products are out of the reach of children. Use proper ventilation and gloves when handling cleaning and disinfecting products.
If you live with someone who is at risk of falling, you can help prevent falls in your house with these tips.
Strike a Balance
Organizing can become an obsession. Learning to tolerate what you cannot control is just as important as having control over your external environment. Find the middle ground with tips from a Northwestern Medicine behavioral health expert.
Then, print your spring cleaning checklist and get to work.