Tips to Clean Your Phone to Prevent Corona and Other Harmful Viruses

April 6, 2020

Tips to Clean Your Phone to Prevent Corona and Other Harmful Viruses

The outbreak of COVID-19 makes the topic of prevention gain more and more attention. Reliable sources provide many recommendations regarding prevention, ranging from washing hands for 20 seconds, keeping a distance of 1 meter, to cleaning surfaces that are normally touched. Regarding the latter, there is one type of surface that might be overlooked, namely the touch screen cell phone.

"The touch screen on our device is a source of microbes that are often ignored even though we use it all day long," said Dr. Dave Westenberg, professor of biological sciences at the University of Science and Technology of Missouri.

In fact, a number of studies have found that cellphones can be carriers of microbial life forms, including bacteria, viruses and fungi.

Although many of them are harmless, according to Westenberg, there are also disease-causing organisms such as the SARS-CoV-2 virus that can survive on the surface of objects long enough to eventually infect anyone who touches it.

Considering the results of a survey conducted by the dscout research company that the average person touches their cell phone 2,617 times a day, then in the current pandemic situation we are facing, diligently cleaning up cell phones should also be one of the top priorities.

How to clean or disinfect the cellphone?

Many cellphone manufacturers give directions on how to clean or disinfect a device as one of the measures to protect themselves from the COVID-19 pandemic. Specific instructions can vary from one brand to another, but the following are common ways that can be applied to each mobile:
  • Before starting, unplug the resources connected to the device.
  • Use only soft, lint-free cloth.
  • Avoid excessive wiping.
  • Keep liquids away from your device.
  • Do not let moisture enter through any gaps.
  • Avoid aerosol sprays, bleach and abrasives.
  • Avoid spraying the cleaner directly on your device.
To disinfect, you can use 70 percent isopropyl alcohol wipes or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes. While what should be avoided so as not to damage your cellphone, can be found here.

How often do you have to clean the cellphone?

According to Dr. Donald W. Schaffner, an extension specialist in food science and a leading professor at Rutgers University, is most likely to cause your device to be contaminated with viruses if someone sneezes or coughs nearby.

So, if you are near anyone who coughs or sneezes, it's a good idea to clean your phone immediately.

In addition, according to Westenberg, it is highly recommended to clean your cellphone regularly, even though you don't touch it too often.

"If you diligently wash your hands, you don't need to clean them too often, maybe once or twice a day." "But if you place your cellphone on a potentially contaminated surface and rarely wash your hands, then I recommend cleaning it more often," he said.