I have worked in a hospital lab in the microbiology department for 34 years (6 in North Carolina and 28 in Northern Illinois) and I am still working.
I’ve never heard of any need to “decontaminate” a home for MRSA, which stands for Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus.
At work, we wipe our counters and other surfaces down with a bleach cleaner, and we also wear gloves.
In a home, it’s important to keep surfaces clean, but I don’t think any special “decontamination” would be necessary. Just regular cleaning, using a good bleach cleanser (the phenols are not effective against MRSA, so Lysol without bleach is kind of a waste of time). Wash the towels, washcloths often, and bed-lines at least once a week–most of us already do this kind of cleaning.
The MAIN cleaning a person should do is to themselves! HAND WASHING with soap and water this is the best way to prevent infections with bacteria and viruses.
Some people swear by the hand-sanitizers, but I can’t use them because they dry my hands so badly that they crack, and broken skin is an invitation for MRSA and other bacteria and viruses to move on in! So cover any cuts and keep them scrupulously clean with soap and water!
Also, use moisturizers to prevent broken skin that happens when skin gets itchy and dry and people scratch it to relieve the itch. This is especially important for older people.
WEAR SHOES!!! Older people especially should be extremely careful of their feet, which can get dry and cracked easily and be an entry for bacteria. Usually this bacteria isn’t MRSA, but various Streptococci, including Strep. pyogenes (Strep Group A), which is the same Strep that causes “strep throat.”–this is also a very bad bacteria, but thankfully (and mysteriously!) it’s still sensitive to many antibiotics. Shoes or grippy socks should be worn in the house.
But you’re never going to be able to rid your environment of all bacteria, no matter how much cleaning and sanitizing and glove-wearing that you do!! Don’t even try to be “germ-free” you can’t, and you’ll just drive yourself and others nuts and probably become immuno-compromised from exhaustion and end up contracting an infection!
Many people carry MRSA in the noses (so don’t pick your nose) or mouths, and there’s nothing you can or SHOULD do about this–our mouths especially are TEEMING with many many types of bacteria, and to try to “sterilize” the mouth would be an invitation for more dangerous organisms to take the opportunity (hence they are called "opportunists) to move on in and take over (e.g., various yeast species, which cause thrush and other painful infections that are harder to treat).
So don’t even try to “de-germ” your house or yourself. Just use the same common sense cleaning that your mom taught you–wash your hands often, and keep a clean house.
I would like to suggest a return to wearing gloves at church. When I was a little girl, we always wore white gloves to church, and didn’t take them off to shake hands. It probably helped us avoid catching colds. So consider it if you are a person who gets sick a lot.
(continued next post)