Smoking kills nearly one person every minute, so if you’ve decided to quit, you've made a great decision. The next step is essential: make sure everything around you is part of the quitting process. Immediately after quitting, you can burn candles to help get rid of the cigarette smell, and rid your home of loose butts and ash trays. But there are also ways you can make your home your own personal quitting assistant.
Rearrange Everything for Smoke-Free Living
As soon as you stop smoking, you start to feel the health benefits. To keep them coming, you’re going to want to completely transform your former smoking areas. Move the furniture around in places you used to smoke. Better yet, if possible, remove anything you used to use to sit on when you went for a smoke. This will convert the space into a smoking-intolerant haven. In those same spaces, you can put up visual representations of your various reasons for quitting: photos of loved ones, pictures of things you could do before you started smoking, anything that will serve as motivation.
Make a Whole New Smoke-Free Space
Smoking used to take up time, and that time is going to have to occupied with some new, positive activities. When that has to be accomplished at home, you’ll need a space in which to read, paint, draw, sew, write or do whatever else that will keep your mind focused on recovery. Grab some paint swatches and go to work. Dedicate the space completely to your new, healthy lifestyle. Move things around, buy some new furniture, grab some cool art for the walls—have fun with it! This is your chance for a great new start.
Go out and grab anything you need to help you overcome cravings. Then put them anywhere and everywhere feasible. Some may have to be limited to the kitchen such as carrots, celery sticks, fruits and other healthy snacks you can reach for and grab quickly. But other items such as sugar-free gum or sweets can be strategically placed virtually anywhere. The same goes for games and puzzles of various sorts. Put them on the tops of end tables or coffee tables, or even underneath a favourite lounger or sofa.
Things to Replace
There may be some items that are so strongly linked to your old habit that you have little choice but to completely replace them. One example would be your pillow. The aroma of the cigarette smoke will be so deeply inside your pillow’s fibres, it may be impossible to get them out. The same could be true for your old lounger if you used to smoke in it. While you can keep the actual bones of the chair, it may have to be completely reupholstered. It may feel drastic, but this could be just what you need to make this decision a permanent one.
If you’ve decided to quit smoking, congratulations. You’re on your way to a healthier, happier life, and you deserve praise for your courage. With a few adjustments, your home can be more than just a place of peace, but a perfect quitting partner.
There is something deeply therapeutic about opening the windows and cleaning out a season's worth of dust and stale air every spring. Spring cleaning has the ability to help you shake off the winter doldrums and prepare for a new season of growth and outdoor excitement. Despite the misleading name, spring cleaning shouldn't only happen in the spring. Your home will also benefit from a deep clean in the Autumn as you prepare for the winter months.
Prepare for A Cold Winter Indoors
Think about it this way - your home will be shut up with the same air for the next 3 or 4 months. You aren't likely to open the windows in the winter, which means your furnace will recirculate the same stale air. If you don't clean your house prior to shutting it up for the winter months, that air will be full of everything from mould spores to accumulated dust.
Poor indoor air quality can pose serious health concerns for people with asthma or other respiratory conditions. It can also make it harder to keep your home clean during the winter months. Instead of feeling miserable and living in a dirty house throughout the coldest and most difficult season of the year, it makes a lot more sense to prep your house for the winter months by deep cleaning and getting everything ready for the cooler months.
Get Your Mind and Home Ready for the Festivities
As the Autumn season progresses, temperatures drop and thoughts begin to turn to the impending festivities. Whether you host a huge New Year's Day party, have family over for Boxing Day, or prepare a dinner over Christmas, you don't want to add deep cleaning your house to your long list of what you must handle as a host. Taking the time to carefully clean your home during Autumn ensures that you will only need to do basic maintenance cleaning before your Christmas gathering.
Cleaning your house in the Autumn can also help you mentally prepare for the months ahead. You can get rid of old items, making space in your home for potential gifts over the Christmas period. You will also feel a sense of relief knowing that you won't have to stare at accumulated grime or dust during those long winter months when you stay home to avoid the cold.
Cleaning Now Reduces the Risk of an Infestation
You aren't the only one who will want to hide out indoors during the chilly months. Rats, mice, insects, and other pests will be looking for a place to call home. Your home currently has at least a summer's worth of crumbs and dropped food that could appeal to potential pests. Cleaning it out now will help reduce the potential risk of your home doing double duty by offering shelter to unwanted guests.
Devoting a week to Autumn cleaning is a brilliant idea. Not only will it make your experience indoors over the winter cleaner and less stressful, but it will also reduce the amount of deep cleaning required in the spring. Adding Autumn cleaning to your annual schedule helps ensure that your home remains inviting and comfortable all year long.
More than 31% of Brits spend 10 hours a week cleaning their homes. Whether vacuuming, scrubbing bathrooms or polishing your furniture, cleaning is a time-consuming chore and could be done faster with better gadgets and devices. With almost 25% of UK residents owning at least one smart home device according to ELS Solutions, cleaning houses can become more efficient. As homes get connected, the house itself will do the bulk of the cleaning for you.
Smart Appliances That Cut Cleaning Time
There are many household chores that the Brits don’t like to do according to an Anglian Home Improvement poll. These include cleaning the oven, toilet, barbecue, grill, bath, and the cat litter. Ironing, vacuuming, mopping & steaming floors, cleaning mirrors and garden furniture also rank high on the list of ‘most hated household jobs.’ The good news is that there are smart appliances that can already do some of these jobs for you.
For example, robot cleaners are doing a brilliant job of hoovering floors and carpets. There’s also the robot mop that mops hardwood floors and tiles. Even windows get their own androids complete with a remote control so you don’t have to climb on ladders or perch on stools to clean hard to reach places. If you don’t like cleaning dog poop, get a self-cleaning potty for dogs under 25 pounds. It automatically wraps and seals your dog’s excrement and the pads absorb their urine. A self-cleaning litter box will also save you time from tidying up after your feline friends. It separates the clean littler from the poop and will put it in a carbon-filtered drawer.
Internet of Things (IoT) Will Play a Big Role
Reducing the burden of cleaning relies on purchasing intelligent home devices and appliances. However, controlling and synchronising these machines will optimise efficiency further. Using a secure home network, you can programme when your vacuum cleaner will do its job followed by mopping. Window cleaning can be done at the same time whilst your dishwasher runs a full load. There are also self-cleaning ovens that you can control saving you the hassle of doing this cumbersome chore. IoT devices let you even adjust when urinals should self-clean with a special toilet bowl cleaning system.
Maintenance Tasks Simplified
As devices communicate with each other, data that is gathered by your machines provides info on your energy or water consumption and also allow you to detect when a potential malfunction will occur. For example, sensors will tell you when your smart appliances need to be serviced and if they break down, a list of repair shops will be provided or even the troubleshooting department of the shop where you bought it from will be suggested. In short, IoT gadgets in your home not only coordinate cleaning chores but also provide a global picture of the situation with the overall objective of making living in smart homes easier and comfortable.
Smart devices and appliances, as well as innovative tools, assist in scaling down household chores. They make cleaning faster, easier and maybe, even fun. With the Internet of Things (IoT), the process of cleaning homes is well orchestrated, all you need to do is kick back your shoes and tell Alexa to switch on your favourite sitcom.
Falls are the most frequent accident affecting people aged 65 and over and they are also the leading cause of death by injury in those aged over 74. The biggest risks for falls include problems with balance, decreased muscle strength, and visual problems, but one important factor that should not be overlooked is clutter in the home. In the book The Second Fifty Years: Promoting Health and Preventing Disability, R. Berg and J. Cassells note that the biggest environmental hazards for falls are clutter and mess. It is therefore key for seniors to give their home a good spring clean, and to take the steps they need to keep their home tidy throughout the year.
Ideal home layouts
It is important to analyse the interior of one’s home to spot possible tripping hazards. These can include books piled up on the floor, low lying furniture, and even small toys left by a grandchild or other member of the family. Floors should be swept or vacuumed regularly. The elderly should have plenty of free space to walk through, though ideally, large furniture pieces should be placed close enough to each other so that they can be used for support. The key is to have as much clear space as reasonably possible and to keep all furniture close to eye level. One study found that loose, unsecured rugs and carpets with curled edges “are recognised environmental hazards that may contribute to falls.” Seniors should opt instead for either wall-to-wall carpeting or laminated or wooden floors.
The effect of clutter on the senior psyche
Around 90% of British people feel that mess and clutter makes them feel unproductive and unhappy. A study published in the British Medical Journal found that these feelings can have serious consequences for a senior person’s health. Depression in older people, for instance, is linked to an increased death of death and disability. It is also linked to cognitive problems and a higher likelihood of developing dementia - all of which can increase the lack of safety and the risk of falls. Seniors can do plenty to improve safety at home by making their environment more appealing. They can boost their self-confidence with safety systems that inform emergency departments if they have had a fall. Phones can be placed in more than one room, whenever cables are covered so as not to pose an extra tripping risk.
A clutter-free environment is a daily task
In order to avoid clutter build-up, filing important documents and tidying up daily are key. Older people who may need help can benefit greatly from part-time cleaners who visit the home and keep surfaces clean and clear. A filing system should also be set up for bills, correspondence, and other written information. Family members can help seniors to switch to online billing, helping them with tasks such as creating Cloud-stored files for any bills or important information they receive by e-mail.
Many studies have shown that clutter can bring about physical and mental risks for persons aged over 65. Clutter should be taken seriously and if necessary, professional cleaners should be relied upon to help those with limited mobility or those who choose to rely on a bit of extra help for greater comfort. Finally, older people can benefit from relying less on paper-based correspondence and more on e-mails as a way to avoid having to file items daily.
Home health care is the fastest growing sector in the health industry. But a healthy home should be your goal just as readily as it is for those who require health services in the privacy of their own home. An uncluttered home can provide beneficial psychological effects, improving your mood and mindset. It can also reduce the risk of bacterial infections in the home, improving your immune system. Moreover, a calm home lowers the risk of accident or injury for you and your family.
Improves your immune system
There is a difference between hygiene and microbial exposure. A misconception exists that having a clean home can weaken the immune system, but what it actually does is lower the chance of exposure to infectious microbial bacteria at home. Improving the hygiene of your home by cleaning dirty surfaces you may touch with your hands and so forth lowers your exposure to these infectious bacteria, which lowers your chance of getting sick and boosts your health.
Family members with lowered immune systems such as children or the elderly will also more readily notice the health benefits of a clean room. As dirt breaks down and suffuses throughout a room, it can create smells and attract flies and other disease-carrying insects. While dust and clutter may not themselves be infectious, these creatures they've attracted can carry a variety of illnesses. Thus, cleaning removes these vicarious forms of infection from your home as well and keeps your home smelling fresh and clean.
Puts your mind at ease
Plus, cleaning the space inside your home can have benefits for your mental health as well. Many people exhibit subconscious or low-level forms of claustrophobia and mysophobia. This is often reinforced by our modern knowledge of dirt and bacteria, and while it may not be as invasive as diagnosed cases, it can increase our chances of depression and other negative mental diseases because we understand at some level the discomfort a dirty home gives us.
Lowers the risk of injury
The risk of an accident or injury in a cluttered home is also considerably higher. Of these, a disproportionate number of child injuries can be directly linked to child walkers, fire extinguishers, and clutter that sticks out into walkways in the home. You’re also more likely to suffer more serious injuries at home, such as injuries due to a home fire or smoke inhalation because it takes longer to respond to the affected area, and there are more flammable materials present.
An uncluttered home can provide a variety of health benefits. Removing dirt and dust that may lure in insects and other animals that carry diseases will lower your family’s chance of infection. It can lower the risk of injury to your family, and allow you to move through your home with ease and peace of mind. A clean living space can also boost your mood and sense of relaxation as you remove an overload of sensory triggers that might be unconsciously putting you on edge in your own home.
Gardening is an important and often over-looked part of spring cleaning. We all know that gardening is fun, but it can substantially improve your health. Research indicates that contact with nature has immense health benefits both to your body and mind.
You may be thinking that you need a big gardening space to achieve this, but a simple backyard gardening is enough to relax, have fun, stay fit, as well as offer you delicious food much like a dream vacation.
Gardening gives you an opportunity for a whole body workout as you reconnect with nature. Spring Cleaning Week looks at five of the most surprising ways that a little digging can help you improve your health.
Reduced anxiety and stress
Is your job draining to the point of making you get home feeling mentally fatigued and stressed? What you need to do is to get out and start gardening. The comforting atmosphere, sights and sound offer a relaxing and calming effect as well as a “gardening glow.” Studies have gone further to postulate that a significant number of people who garden are less likely to be stressed.
This is because the beautiful nature helps in reducing cortisol levels, which is the hormone that causes stress, poor health, and a weak immune system. In addition, results show that the effect is felt much longer after leaving the garden. Reduced stress levels are vital in preventing lifestyle diseases such as obesity, diabetics, heart diseases, etc.
Great way to work out for the whole family
Once upon a time gardening was thought to be an activity that was mostly for the elderly. This has changed over the years as younger people join the gardening club. One reason for this is that gardening has been linked to weight loss.
The surprising fact is that the moderate and simple form of physical activity has been squeezed into the same category as hiking, cycling and walking regarding the number of calories burnt. Unbelievable, right? So how about instead of going for your usual evening run you grab a pair of gardening gloves?
Gardening is among the few painless, fun and enjoyable forms of exercising. Through pulling, stretching, pushing and lifting you will get enough workout for the day. The fact that you will need to attend to your plants every day means that you will also get your daily portion of the workout. We all know that regular exercise is more like an apple a day in keeping health issues at bay. You also get the benefit of keeping fit without using up all your money in an expensive gym membership.
On top of this, gardening is a fun and enjoyable physical activity that can be done both by the elderly and the young. It is the ideal workout for the family. Through experiencing gardening, you can connect and bond with your family.
Improved mental health
Gardening is not only good for your physical health, but it is also critical for your mental health as well. While you generally use your hands, it also works on giving your brain a thorough workout. Gardening gives you an opportunity to think through problems and find answers.
Furthermore, it requires research on the different types of plants that may do well in your climate and soil. With time you may encounter some problems that may need you to rack your brain for solutions. This will undoubtedly elevate your creativity as well as give you a better understanding of your plants.
The pleasure and satisfaction resulting from gardening have a therapeutic advantage that promotes mental health. It also helps in keeping your sensory organs alert, thus keeping your mind engaged. According to studies, gardening is one of the most affordable and effective ways that help prevent mental disorders.
Strengthened immune system
Vitamin D also called sunshine vitamin, is essential for a good immune system and healthy bones. So, next time you go out into the garden soak up in the sun for a dose of vitamin D that’s essential to your body. Caution should be taken when going out to avoid sunburns. Sunscreen and a pair of sunglasses will do.
Before you go calling someone who has a little dirt under their fingernails hear this. A little soil under your fingers is a sign of good health. Surprised? Well, thanks to beneficial bacteria that are present in the soil, you can Instagram your soil-stained hands and be okay. The bacteria works on improving your immunity which means that you will be able to fight infections as well as get sick less. A little gardening also reduces and prevents certain allergies.
What could be healthier than plucking your fruits and vegetables from your own grown garden? As you grow your food, you can opt to use natural and organic fertilizers, which ensures your harvests are always at the peak and most nutritious. The benefits this attaches to your health are numerous. If we are what we eat, then growing our own food will make us better people, right? We all know what a trip to the organic store does to the pocket, which is the reason why you will appreciate your own garden yielding more. You’ll learn how to save money on a healthy diet by growing your own food.
Apart from above benefits, gardening has been linked to other health benefits such as improving the health of your bones, heart, and lowers the risk of high blood pressure and stroke. Besides, if you want to burn calories reach out to your garden tools and burn up to 300 calories an hour. It's high time you grab a shovel and start digging.
If you still need convincing, check out Spring Cleaning Week's article on why gardening is good for your health.
Whether you have had a dinner party where some of the guests had a little too much and spilt the wine, or mud has been stomped into your carpet seemingly beyond repair, a carpet cleaner is something that we will all need at some point to help our floors look brand new. It is at this point that you have to start thinking about whether you need a professional carpet cleaner to come in or if you are going to just do it yourself.
Of course, each choice has its own strengths and weaknesses. The professional route is often faster, more thorough, and the workers are professionally trained (as well as insured against damage). DIY is cheaper, but also harder work, and there is always the risk of you damaging your carpet yourself. It’s a tough choice to make, but your choice all the same.
We all have our hobbies and the things we like, and gardening is one of the most calming ones out there. People love gardening as it doesn't cause any negative emotions. It's a soothing experience being among plants that you care for and have planted. But is gardening good just for making the surroundings of your home prettier, or is there something else to it? In this article, Spring Cleaning Week will help you understand why gardening is good for your health and why you should pick up gardening if you're having issues in life (whether you're too stressed out or just want to feel better). The psychological benefits of cleaning and making your space more aesthetically pleasing are well documented. There have even been occasions where a critical illness was improved by gardening as well, thanks to sunlight, fresh air, gentle exercise, and a positive mental state.
Gardening does require some skill, knowledge, and dedication, but overall, it won't pose too much of a problem if you find a great gardening guide!
So, without further ado, here's all you need to know about why gardening is healthy!
Stress can cause even bigger and more dangerous health problems, and it's never a good idea to push yourself further than you should. Many activities help with stress such as meditation, but gardening is quite effective as well.
You simply feel connected to nature all the time, plus there's a feeling of accomplishment and happiness while you tender to your plants.
Besides, plants convert CO2 into oxygen, and even the smallest amounts will make a difference.
Boost Mental Health
Some psychiatrists and doctors recommend going to the gym or meditating as a way to fight mental health diseases such as anxiety, depression, and others. However, gardening is a good choice as well, except that it usually isn't presented to people as a choice.
Gardening will surely change your life as long as you give it a chance.
People usually don't feel alone when they're surrounded by plants, and if you're the one that's taking care of them, then the effect is even more powerful.
Good Environment Motivates you to Exercise
Why not combine a couple of methods that help you deal with mental health issues as well as improving your overall health? Working out is a proven way to deal with depression and gardening is great for preparing the environment.
If your garden is ignored and doesn't have a lot of plants, you won't be motivated to enjoy the little things in life. In this case, you won't make an effort to start exercising.
Now, if you manage to beautify your environment, then exercising in nature will definitely reward you. Get yourself some music and start working out!
Good Environment for Yoga
If you aren't a fan of exercising and just want to feel better without breaking a sweat (in a relaxed, controlled manner), then the alternative is yoga. Yoga is an amazing method of ridding your body of all negative feelings, as well as releasing stiffness in your body.
But, you can't do yoga anywhere. Yoga (as well as meditation) is best done in a calm, healthy environment. A wonderful garden will do the trick fine!
Place the yoga mat anywhere you like and start doing yoga. You'll feel the bad feelings leaving your body, and you'll feel your body becoming ‘younger.' Just remember to maintain your garden constantly, so it doesn't get ruined by weeds and other culprits.
Grow your Own Food
Sick of eating unhealthy junk food? You are sure that the potatoes you bought from the store aren't as fresh as advertised?
Well, there's only one real solution to this problem – gardening. There's no other way you can be sure that what you're eating is healthy and without artificial flavoring, or additives (and even pesticides which are the biggest issue people have with ‘organic' foods).
The food you would start with when you're just starting gardening is relatively easy to grow and doesn't require too much knowledge. The best thing about gardening is time – you just have to water the plants and sometimes switch up the soil.
In the end, if you grow your food, you'll be much healthier, and the food itself will be tastier (plus, you'll feel proud of yourself!).
Divert your Mind
You can be alone with just your thoughts in the garden which will give you time to think about certain things. And if you just want to let your mind rest, grab a chair, a glass of wine, and sit in your garden.
Make the experience even better by doing this at night so you can gaze at the stars and enjoy the fresh air!
Spring Cleaning Week looks at all areas of both your home and your life, we believe everything can be cleaned, refreshed, and improved if you try. Follow us on Twitter @SpringCleanWeek
Unfortunately, it's a fact of life that we will be injured at some point. It’s believed that there are more than three bone fractures for every 100 people in Britain every single year. An injury of that severity can impair your ability to perform day to day tasks - and cleaning is no exception. If your house falls into disarray or disrepair it can have a negative impact on your psychology and your quality of life. Even if there are no broken bones involved, there are lots of ways in which an injury can really set you back when it comes to cleaning.
Luckily, Spring Cleaning Week has help to offer. Here are some top tips on how you can keep your place tidy and even feel the benefits of a clean, airy home if you’ve experienced a setback with your health.
Prioritise your chores
One of the good things about cleaning is that not all tasks have to be done right away, which means that you can easily make a list of what needs to be done now and what can wait until later. For example, keeping your bathroom and kitchen clean and sanitary is much more important than tidying out all those boxes under the bed or bending down to scrub the skirting boards clean. If you make a list of what needs doing and what can wait, you can focus your limited energy on the cleaning jobs which really matter instead.
Consider hiring a cleaner
The Daily Mail reports that a third of British people are believed to have used a cleaner, but it’s still not a common choice. Most people tend to clean their own homes for a variety of reasons, ranging from the extra costs involved to the impact it can have on your privacy. But it’s entirely possible to hire a cleaner on a one-off or short-term basis rather than committing to a long-term plan, and it may well improve your recovery to take a little time off from cleaning. This may be a particularly good move if you’re experiencing the symptoms of a sports hernia or a similarly debilitating issue, as these can include severe pain when twisting around. While there may be an up front cost, it’s worth seeing the move as an investment in your recovery, as well as a practical move in keeping your house clean.
Avoid bending down
If you’ve experienced a leg or waist injury, it may cause you lots of pain to bend down. And while your doctor may recommend some gentle bending exercises as part of a recovery programme, you should be careful not to do it too much until you’re advised to. So for cleaning jobs which require bending down, it may be wise to consider investing in some new kit to prevent problems. Brushes and scrubbers with long handled attachments, for example, can make a world of difference.
While an injury can often be stressful and difficult to deal with, it’s not the end of the world. From hiring a cleaner to focusing on what’s urgent, there are all sorts of ways to manage the issue. By following these tips, you’ll soon find yourself with a nice clean home as you approach your recovery.
If you found this useful, you might also like to read about how technology is making spring cleaning easier for the elderly, and you can read about the benefits of spring cleaning and how it can make your life better.
Your garage is the biggest storage space you have in your home. If you’re like most people, though, you may not be using it properly. It’s easy to do, given how little time most of us spend in our garages. Because it’s out of sight and out of mind, you probably just stack boxes against the walls or pile items in the corner and forget about them until it’s time to use them. Then, you have to spend long, frustrating moments digging through all those piles of mismatched objects — looking for the one item you need. Your garage may be a cramped, cluttered, confusing mess — one that you might think is impossible to organize. Yet the truth is, de-cluttering your garage is simpler than you might think. Once you get your garage organized, it will be much easier to keep it that way.
Organizing your garage is as simple as following a few basic steps. First of all, you’ll need to take everything out of your garage to group items together and get rid of anything you don’t want to keep any longer. Next, take a close look at the space inside your garage and determine how you’ll want to use each area. If you’d like to designate a corner of your garage for a workbench, for example, you will know where to organize your tools. You’ll also be able to estimate how much room you’ll need to store certain items.
A streamlined garage means making better use of the space you already have. For example, take advantage of wall space. Using hooks, racks and shelves will provide more storage room and keep your garage from feeling cramped. For smaller, loose items, storage bins can help keep them all in one place. It’s also a good idea to keep related items close together in your new organization system. Because, this will make it easier for you to find tools or other items you use together frequently. No matter how you store belongings in your newly organized garage, it’s important to label everything. This way, you’ll know where each item is and where everything goes.
Having an organized garage can save you time and frustration. The good news is, it doesn’t have to be difficult. The following guide and checklist can help you make your garage a more organized place for your items. Take a look, and make the most of your available space.
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