The year 2020 will be remembered for being the year of the coronavirus, lockdown and masks. It is a real lightning bolt that has turned our lives and habits upside down. In this new phase of living with the virus, there are a number of sanitation measures to put in place. Some mandatory, others dictated by common sense.
The latter category includes scrupulously cleaning the study station, which should be sanitized daily, if not twice a day. Let’s figure out how to do it!
The importance of sanitation and sanitization
Here are a series of very simple rules you can put in place to sanitize your study station.
Rule number one: before you set out to study, open books and notebooks, and touch pens, properly wash your hands for about 40 seconds under warm running water, using soap. After washing, use a sanitizing gel to break down bacteria. This simple habit must become the practice; it may sound boring but it can really make a difference.
Rule number two: open the windows. Remember that although you sometimes hear the opposite from some pseudo-experts on TV or in the newspapers, the virus is not airborne, so don’t be afraid! By doing so you can ensure good air exchange in every room of the house, and at the same time let the sun’s rays, so beneficial to the human psyche, filter through. Repeat this healthy process at least twice a day, and you will succeed in eliminating a good deal of germs. If you feel like it, use a room fragrance remover as well. You will smell good in the house, and this reinforces the perception of a clean environment, making you more relaxed and more focused.
To date, there is no certainty about how long the virus is able to survive on different surfaces. Certainly from a few hours to a few days, but this time frame is far too vague. Therefore, let’s get it into our heads that the virus could be anywhere, and that cleaning the surface of the desk, pens, and objects that are part of the study station is a must.
It is not complicated and with a little practice will take only a few minutes. Use water and neutral detergents, and afterwards use a disinfectant with 0.1 percent sodium hypochlorite, or 70 percent ethanol as an alternative. This practice should be applied to all objects you frequently touch, even those not directly related to your study, such as smartphones, door and window handles, TV remote controls, computer keyboard and mouse, video game console controllers, and more.
If you live in a shared apartment with roommates, make sure everyone follows the same hygiene rules, and also focus on cleaning items that are touched and used often, such as the coffee maker, bathroom door or refrigerator handle.
Finally, another piece of advice: if you bring books from outside (e.g., from the university library), take them using disposable latex gloves, as they have been touched by other students whose health conditions you cannot know. At this point, before you start using them, let 3 or 4 days pass, keeping them in a well-ventilated place: by doing so, you will be almost completely sure that the virus is no longer present on the surface. Remember, of course, not to cough or sneeze on the books, lest you risk infecting the next student who borrows them! For the same reason, remember not to wet your fingers with saliva to turn pages.
No to psychosis
Finally, one last piece of advice: all we have been talking about since February is the coronavirus, so much so that all the world’s problems seem to have incredibly disappeared. This can lead to full-blown psychosis, so try to keep your mind on and your nerves steady, and avoid getting a phobia of sterilizing everything. The most important thing is to wash your hands after returning home, and avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth as much as possible.
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