The sun is finally out in Vancouver, and there are so many ways in which spring cleaning can benefit you. For starters, there is a spike in your mood and calmness levels when you have a super fresh and clean space. You can also think more clearly. Not only does spring cleaning bring these mental health benefits, it can also bring physical benefits because having a clean space prevents bacteria and viruses from being spread. Keep reading to find out more benefits of spring cleaning, and how to spring clean to make you healthier.

1. Strengthen your immune system

The blossoming of plants outdoors is a celebration of renewal — of seasonal allergies, that is. Beyond keeping allergies at bay, a clean house can help you breathe better by preventing respiratory issues and supporting a healthy immune system.

How to clean for immune health

  • While you should aim to clean regularly to avoid immune system triggers, spring-cleaning can be an opportunity for a deep clean. Dust the legs of furniture, tops of frames and mirrors, tops of lamps and lights, floor baseboards, railings, and window sills that may be more out of reach.
  • Vacuum all rugs, floors, carpets, ceiling cobwebs, and curtains well to eliminate dust and keep the air cleaner.
  • Wash all bedding and blankets. Put pillows into the dryer on high heat for 10 minutes to kill any dust mites.
  • Take off your shoes at the door to avoid carrying in dirt and dust from the outdoors throughout your home.

2. Decrease stress and depression

Whether you’re temporarily stuck indoors, work from home, or are having a tough time getting to sleep, your mental health can benefit from keeping your space tidy. You may realize that you can think clearer and even sleep better when you have a clean space that is also not cluttered. Also the process of getting rid of things you don’t need and creating a space where you can be free in, can be very refreshing.

How to de-clutter for mental health

  • Don’t just stack your magazines into piles or hide unworn clothes under your bed. Sort through clothing, toiletries, and paperwork. Get rid of things that no longer serve you to make room for things that bring pleasure and joy.
  • To promote good sleep and relaxation, keep only essentials on your bedside table.
  • Embrace cleaning itself as a way to de-stress.

3. Prevent illness

Cleaning things you touch a lot — or several people use often — can help you avoid illness and minimize the spread of viruses and bacteria. Thwarting food-borne illness should also be a priority in the home.

How to clean to prevent illness

  • Clean the items you use most, or items that could come in contact with your mouth, eyes, or nose. That may include your cellphone, keyboard, bedding, and towels.
  • It is important to tackle several different areas in the kitchen, such as the fridge and freezer, pantry, counters, cupboards. It can be overwhelming to do all at once, so schedule each task separately for a deeper cleaning.
  • Deep clean the sink everyday, as it can arbor more bacteria than a toilet.
  • Wash all your produce to prevent food borne illness and promote good health.
  • Clean bathrooms and other places that are shared with family members more frequently.

4. More healthy eating, physical activity

Your physical home can set you up for an active life and healthy food choices — or make movement and sticking to nutritious meals more difficult.

Studies show there’s a correlation between keeping a clean home and being active and choosing healthier food options. Spring-cleaning can also motivate us to reset or try out a healthier lifestyle.

How to organize for healthy habits

  • Make cooking more appealing by sharpening knives, tidying your spice rack, and organizing pots, pans, and utensils.
  • Store healthy foods at eye level in clear containers, and place unhealthy foods out of sight.
  • Donate workout clothes you rarely wear, and organize your favorite active wear in a separate drawer for easy access.
  • Open windows every day to circulate fresh air in and stale air out.

5. Reduce risk of injury

More than 1 in 4 adults over age 65 fall each year, leading to 3 million emergency room visits, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Falls are the leading cause of injury-related death for this age group.

Spring is a great time to make adjustments to your home, or an older parent’s home, to reduce the risk of falls.

How to clean for a safe home

  • Prioritize cleaning clutter from pathways, hallways, and staircases.
  • Secure rugs and repair any other tripping hazards, like loose floorboards.
  • Cords are a major tripping hazard — even for the most spry of us. Tack cords to baseboards, or reroute them along the wall to eliminate the risk of tripping on one.

We hope you can take some of these tips, and apply them to your space this Spring, and are excited for you to see the benefits that come when you do.

DISCLAIMER: These posts should not be used to self-diagnose or self-treat any health, medical, physical or psychiatric condition. Information shared via posts does not replace professional healthcare advice specific to your condition and needs. If you are unsure whether you would benefit from implementing tools discussed in these posts, please contact your healthcare provider.