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Natural Awakenings Westchester / Putnam / Dutchess New York

Cleaning, Sanitizing and Disinfecting Are Not the Same

One of the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic has been the barrage of mixed messages—some good, some not so good—about how to stay safe. Ann LaGoy, president of Sound Earth, a Hudson Valley company that makes natural cleaning and care products, says it’s important to understand the difference between cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting.

Cleaning encompasses organizing clutter, dusting and removing debris and dirt from surfaces, LaGoy says. “Cleaning will always have a positive effect on home occupants, because it removes allergens and microorganisms with the added benefit of making us feel better about the space.”

Using soap or polish adds to the efficacy of cleaning and leads to sanitizing.

“The soap and/or oil and friction break down lipids and therefore kill off germs, bacteria and some viruses that have their own protective envelope,” LaGoy says. “Our scented products contain therapeutic-grade essential oils that add another level of cleaning and sanitizing. This process is not going to kill all viruses, but it’s sufficient for use within your home if your home is free from anyone who is ill.”

When it’s necessary to touch surfaces other people have touched—shopping carts, door handles, a pin pad—LaGoy recommends wearing disposable gloves, and changing them between store and vehicle, to avoid physical contact with the virus.

For disinfecting, she suggests making DIY wipes with 60 percent isopropyl alcohol: “It’s a quick, surefire way to kill viruses on surfaces you’re coming into contact with.”

 For more info about Sound Earth, visit Sound Earth.

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