Ah, our cell phones. They are an important part of our lives. We get so much from them: calendars, online shopping, music, videos, social media. But, did you know that your cell phone could also give you something less fun, like the flu?
There are many things you can do to protect yourself from getting the flu or infecting others, and experts say one of them is cleaning your phone.
Your phone spends a major part of your day in your hand, and experts say it can have ten times more bacteria on it than a toilet seat.
Clean Your Cell Phone To Avoid Flu
With this year’s widespread, intense flu, Dr. Mary Beth Saunders of Lee Health in Florida said it’s important to take as many precautions as possible.
“Everything we touch with our hands, and then our hands become contaminated with germs. Those germs then transfer to our cell phone,” Dr. Saunders said.
Jeremy Azinger, the owner of iBreakiFix in Fort Myers, Florida, fixes hundreds of phones a week. He cleans every phone that comes into the shop.
“You want to make sure not to use any sort of cleaning wipes or anything like that because that can damage the coating on the device,” Azinger said. They can also damage the internal parts of your phone, too.
Instead, he said to use a microfiber cloth and 70-90 percent isopropyl alcohol.
“The higher the content, the quicker it dries, the less likely it is to damage your device,” he said. “Typically you want do front and back sides. Anywhere you touch. Buttons are equally important.”
You can also use Q-tips to get the hard-to-reach places.
Health experts recommend cleaning your phone multiple times a day to best prevent the flu.
Other Ways To Prevent Phone From Spreading Illness
Beyond cleaning your phone carefully, a few changes in your routine can help lower your risk of contaminating your phone.
Keep Your Phone Away From Kids
Let’s be honest. Kids are adorable, but they can be little germ factories, especially during flu season. So, avoid letting the little ones play with your phone or other portable electronics during peak flu season.
Avoid Sharing Phones At All
Kids aren’t the only ones who get sick. Therefore, it’s probably a good idea to not share your phone with anyone to prevent the spread of germs. Did you know the flu virus can stay alive on surfaces for two to eight hours?
Keep Your Hands Clean
And, of course, the best prevention against getting the flu is good hygiene—not just for your phone, but also yourself. You and your phone come into contact with many people and surfaces throughout the day. A good, old-fashioned hand washing with soap and water goes a long way in keeping the flu at bay.
Written by Lisa Greenberg for WFTX.
Copyright 2018 Scripps Media, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.
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