In the United States, plans are gearing up for fall and winter holidays, preparing for visits with family and friends amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. As plans are made, and COVID-19 numbers again on the rise, it is important for individuals to continue to follow national, state, and local guidelines, as well as the Centers for Disease Control Recommendations to ensure the safety of everyone especially the populations most vulnerable.
The Risk of Coronavirus Spread at Holiday Gatherings
While gatherings which include household members or virtual celebrations, the risk of COVID-19 is low, but in-person gatherings increase the risk of infection. For those in communities experiencing a surge in coronavirus cases, the risk is increased. Increased risk is also a factor for indoor events as well as those celebrations which include larger numbers of guests. If family and friends are traveling to visit you from areas with increasing infections, the risk increases particularly among those who have failed to practice spread prevention measures.
Reducing the Risk of COVID-19 at Holiday Celebrations
Encouraging family and friends who will be attending your holiday celebration or visiting your home for the holidays to practice preventive behaviors can help. Wearing masks, physical distancing, hand washing, and the use of hand sanitizer can help protect against infection prior to their visit. During your holiday celebration, encourage social distancing, frequent hand washing, and be sure to have disposable masks and hand sanitizer on hand sanitizer on hand. Friends and family members who have been exposed, infected, or experienced symptoms of COVID-19 should attend the holiday gathering virtually rather than in person. Everyone in attendance should wear masks and practice social distancing to protect any friends and family members with an increased risk for infection who will be in attendance.
Getting Your Home Ready to Host Holiday Guests
No doubt you have already been practicing more stringent cleaning and disinfecting around your home in the age of coronavirus but preparing for holiday guests is a different proposition than simply keeping your home sanitized and clean for your household members. Prepare your entryway to collect shoes, jackets, gloves, and hats in a single area with disinfectant spray available. Also have hand sanitizer at the ready for those entering your home. Clean and disinfect high touch areas like doorknobs, kitchen surfaces, and the bathroom your guests will be using. Have plenty of hand soap available as well as hand sanitizer for your guests to use while visiting in your home.
You’ll also want your home looking its best when the guests arrive, which means clean, streak free windows and mirrors, as well as freshly vacuumed floors, dusted surfaces, freshly cleaned and decluttered spaces. If your guests will be staying overnight, have fresh towels and sheets prepared in advance of their arrival. Your kitchen and dining areas, along with your bathrooms should be cleaned and sanitized for your guests.
Hosting the Holiday Celebration Safely
If the weather permits, plan your holiday activities outside rather than inside. If inside is a must, then ensure your space is properly ventilated, and allows your guests to spread out. You can supply extra masks, hand sanitizer, and disinfecting wipes for use during the holiday gathering to help everyone stay safe. You may even want to ask your guests to avoid contact with those outside their households for 14 days prior to the holiday gathering you are hosting. During your holiday celebration encourage social distancing and minimize close contact like hand shaking or hugging. Encourage your guests to frequently wash hands and have plenty plates, glasses, and utensils on hand to discourage sharing of these items (or have disposable, single serve options on hand).
Signature Maids Can Help You Get Ready
If you need assistance readying your home for guests during the upcoming holiday season, the professionals at Signature Maids are ready to assist with cleaning, disinfecting, and sanitizing your home for an enjoyable holiday celebration! Call today!