How to disinfect the phone

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Electronics are some of the stuff that society can’t live without in the 21st Century because they have made people’s lives more manageable. Technology has changed how things are done as they have improved a lot. However, Graveto, Costa, and Santos’s (2018) study show that phones contain many pathogenic bacteria, unlike toilet seats, because of irregular disinfection. Indeed, as microorganisms carriers, here is how to prevent its involvement in infectious disease transmission.

The importance of electronic equipment

Electronic medical equipment like cardiac monitors, electrosurgical units, and defibrillators are continuously being used in the hospital environment. All such equipment serves a fundamental purpose in fixing various health issues. If you go to the office, the spaces have computers, phones, shredders, fax machines, and multifunction printers.

Over the years, computer technology has improved so much that now with the emergence of portable ones. And also mobile phones that you carry with you almost all the time. These technologies have become like our own personal assistants, and they have proved to be very important in the business world and personal life.

The downside

Now, the downside of this beautiful equipment is: they are like a magnet for dust and grimy fingerprints, and they can be challenging to clean and rid of the pathogens that dwell on them. From streaks and build-up of bacteria and germs, electronics endure a daily barrage of contaminants that can cause infection and make you sick. For example, when in public, when eating, commuting to work, and even when you visit the washroom, you use your phone. The study by Panigrahi et al. (2020) indicated that approximately 25,000 pathogens inhabit every mobile phone’s square inch. Making it the filthiest items someone can get close to daily and many opportunities for germs and bacteria to transfer from your hands to your phone and vice versa.

Given that many hands handle electronics, especially in a workplace, they become the hot spot of bacterial or viral infections. Since the COVID-19 pandemic broke out late last year, it continues to ravage the world, and it has made life unbearable. It is necessary to take precautions to keep ourselves safe by maintaining a high hygiene level and regularly disinfecting frequently touched surfaces. Now that Cavari et al. (2016) stated that 85percent of the world’s population possess the hard to clean electronics, how do you go about cleaning your phone?


Some manufacturers usually give tips on cleaning specific equipment, so it is essential to read the device’s instruction manual before you start cleaning. When cleaning any electronic equipment, don’t spray water or cleaner directly to it. Moisture can cause the product to short circuit and cause severe damage, and you want to avoid that. Ensure the device is disconnected from the power source and remove the battery if it has one before cleaning.

When cleaning your phone, you have to be cautious since it probably has a fingerprint-resistant coating that could be damaged. The safest way to clean these electronics is to wipe them gently with a damp microfiber cloth. Use cotton swabs to get into crevices and the edges of the screen and buttons. When cleaning your laptop, turn it upside down while opened and gently shake out the keyboard to get rid of crumbs, then use a can of compressed air and blast the keyboard and crevices.

Michael et al.’s (2020) study found out that 91percennt of phones in public settings are shared. The researchers further recommended the general use of 70% isopropyl alcohol wipes or Clorox disinfecting wipes across electronic devices. That entails cleaning the hard non-porous surfaces such as the display and keyboard. But first, check the device’s manufactures instruction manual.


Cavari, Y., Kaplan, O., Zander, A., Hazan, G., Shemer-Avni, Y., & Borer, A. (2016). Healthcare workers mobile phone usage: A potential risk for viral contamination. Surveillance pilot study. Infectious Diseases48(6), 432-435.

Graveto, J. M., Costa, P. J., & Santos, C. I. (2018). Cell phone usage by health personnel: preventive strategies to decrease risk of cross infection in clinical context. Texto & Contexto-Enfermagem27(1).

Panigrahi, S. K., Pathak, V. K., Kumar, M. M., & Raj, U. (2020). Covid-19 and mobile phone hygiene in healthcare settings. BMJ Global Health5(4), e002505.

Michael, S. H., Hui, T. C., Khalid, E. S. B., Quan, L. J., & Meganathan, A. (         June 2020). A Study on Mobile Phone Cleaning Practices and Knowledge of Microbial Contaminants.

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