If you’re washing your hands regularly to avoid getting sick with COVID-19 (or anything else), you’ll want to make sure your phone is clean as well.
Have you cleaned your phone screen lately? Think about this, with the coronavirus outbreak, we are probably washing our hands much more frequently. If you are not cleaning your cell phone, however, you are getting them dirty as soon as you touch it and most of us touch our phone all day long.
Limitations are being put in place in the United States as well as around the world to help keep the population safe during COVID-19. Since most of us will be spending more time home unless it is absolutely necessary, we will probably spend a lot of that time on the phone. Disinfecting the phone properly, therefore, is a priority.
It really makes sense when you think about our phone use. We touch our phone so many times during the day that we probably don’t even think about it. It could be while we are sitting on our sofa, while we are at the kitchen table, or even while we are on the toilet! Studies out of the University of Arizona have shown that over 17,000 bacterial gene copies are found on the standard phone.
Some of the microbes are relatively harmless but the Staphylococcus aureus and pseudomonas can make you sick.
You should understand that you aren’t going to get sick if you have them on your phone, but to avoid illness, it’s important to keep your phone clean.
According to the Assistant Dean of global health that Ruger’s Robert Woods Johnson’s Medical School, Karen WeiRu Lin, MD, “As long as those germs don’t get into an opening in your body, you’re okay. But most people hold their phones really close to their faces.”
Now that we have convinced you of the need to keep your phone clean, how do you disinfect it properly?
The first step is to completely shut down your phone. This step is only going to take a few minutes.
Next, grab some disinfectant wipes that contain no bleach. You can use Clorox or Lysol brands, as long as they are bleach-free. If we haven’t said it often enough yet, bleach will damage your phone so don’t use it!
“Do not use harsh or hospital-grade disinfectant wipes,” Rajeev Fernando, MD, an infectious disease expert in Southampton, New York says.
Since you are cleaning something small you don’t have to use all of the liquid in the wipes. Squeeze some of the excess liquid out to keep from getting drips inside of the crevices that could shut down your phone. Use the wipe to clean the phone at that point.
A damp microfiber cloth or a lint-free cloth should be used to wipe down the device a second time. “It’s important to use a microfiber or lint-free cloth to ensure your device doesn’t get scratched,” explains Hector Santos-Ortega, a certified smartphone repair technician.
At this point, your phone is disinfected. You should do this every few days to keep the bacteria away.
Check out this video for some detailed, visual direction.