Germaphobes, beware--what we are about to tell you in this article just might make your skin crawl. If we asked you where you would find the most germs in your home, you'd probably answer with lightning speed--the bathroom. Of course it would be the bathroom, right? After all, the toilet is in there, people wash all the dirt and grime off in there, and there's all that spitting after toothbrushing. Well if you think that toilet seat is crawling with germs, you'll be appalled to learn that there are even more crawling around in your carpets.
According to Dr. Philip Tierno, Pathology and Microbiology professor at NYU Langone Medical Center, your carpet is nearly 4,000 times dirtier than your toilet seat. In fact, most carpets contain nearly 200,000 bacteria per square inch. Mind blowing, right? How in the world can carpets (especially those that get vacuumed multiple times each week) contain so much bacteria? Unfortunately, carpets get a lot of traffic, and every person and animal in the home leaves behind a host of invisible mess every time they move around. Carpets collect dirt, organisms, dust mites, mold, animal dander, skin cells, animal saliva, hair, insect parts, sweat, fungi, and pollen--and that's just some of it.
While vacuuming usually helps the situation, sometimes it can make matters worse. The key to good vacuuming is to keep up with high traffic areas every day and use a vacuum with a HEPA filter. According to the Carpet and Rug Institute, the best way to keep your home healthier is to hire professionals to deep clean your carpets every 12 to 18 months. Still think professional carpet cleaning isn't necessary? Let's take a quick peek at a few of the more serious creepy crawlies that might be hiding in your carpet:
- Norovirus. This nasty virus causes stomach flu symptoms and spreads easily between family members. The norovirus can survive in your carpet for a whopping four to six weeks, and get stirred up and released into the air every time someone walks across it.
- Fungi and mold. Lots of wet spills and wet shoes can cause some truly strange things to grow in your carpets. Fungi and mold can cause serious allergies and illness.
- Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA). MRSA is a serious, penicillin-resistant bacteria that can be carried for years in a healthy person, only to suddenly rear its' ugly head through a series of bumps, rashes, and fever. MRSA is difficult to treat and in serious cases can lead to death.
The bottom line is that your carpet is harboring a lot of downright nasty stuff. Even in the cleanest homes, it is impossible to keep it all out. The best solution is an annual deep cleaning by trained professionals who can make your carpet as healthy as possible. Please feel free to contact us at ServiceMaster Quality Services to learn more about our residential and commercial carpet cleaning services.