Whether you have back pain, sciatica, joint pain, or another similar issue, cleaning your home may feel extremely challenging. Any activity that requires you to bend can exacerbate your pain and other symptoms. Plus, leaving the chores to pile up for someone else might not be an option, and allowing certain areas of your home to get dirty can cause other problems. Dust and grime build up on the vast majority of surfaces in the house (even your walls!) and can worsen your allergies.
Fortunately, we have a few tips and tricks to help you clean tough areas of your home without having to bend at the waist or kneel.
Cleaning Your Bathtub
Tubs are one of those areas of the house that are frequently in use. That also means that they can quickly build up dirt, grime, soap scum, and bacteria, so regular cleanings are important. Bathtubs are notorious for causing back pain, as it can be difficult leaning over the rim to scrub the corners. To help prevent you from overextending, consider investing in a sponge with an extended handle. Long-handle bath sponges are available at a wide variety of retailers, and can help extend your reach so you don’t have to bend at an extreme angle. Otherwise, you can try using a traditional cotton wring mop. A rectangular mop won’t do much in the way of grooves, corners, and curved surfaces.
Before you begin scrubbing, however, first use this classic trick: Spray or spread your favorite cleaner or homemade remedy, such as baking soda and vinegar, over every surface of the tub, and let it soak for at least 10 minutes. Let the cleaner do most of the work for you in breaking down tough grime and soap scum. When you’re ready, begin scrubbing the tub with your cleaning tool, starting from the top and working your way towards the bottom center. Let the cleaning solution rest a bit longer when you’re finished to further break down the dirt and scum you may have missed. Just remember that depending on the varnish and material of your tub, you could harm the surface of the bathtub if you leave a cleaning solution on for too long. Then you can do a final rinse, preferably with a detachable shower head if you have it.
Cleaning Your Walls and Baseboards
Scrubbing down your walls and baseboards might seem like an unnecessary task at first, especially if you have bigger, more noticeable chores waiting for you. At the same time, removing the dust and dirt from those surfaces can make a big difference in the look and cleanliness of a room. It will also tremendously help you and other family members suffer from fewer allergy attacks.
To gently scrub down your walls, use a wall mop or a regular rectangular mop, along with a wall-cleaning wipe that will trap dirt and dust. If you don’t have wipes, simply attach a dish rag to the mop and dampen it with water and a little dish soap. As with a long-handled bathtub sponge, a long-handled mop will prevent you from bending at extreme angles to clean your walls.
You can also use the same tools to clean your baseboards. A cotton wring mop may work better than a rectangular one in removing dirt from the grooves in the baseboards, but a rectangular one will still work in a pinch. An upright vacuum cleaner with a long wand attachment is another excellent tool for cleaning baseboards. Otherwise, you can use a simple broom to brush off dirt, then use a traditional vacuum to clean it off the floor.
A Few Final Tips
If you have to clean the house with a bad back or aching joints, it’s important to take frequent breaks. Letting yourself rest in between chores will give your body time to recuperate, and also give you time to feel out those aches and pains and determine whether you should stop.
The best thing you can do is reduce the number of times you need to bend, whether that means investing in some easy-to-use cleaning gadgets or cleaning less vigorously. Using a grabber tool, for instance, can help you pick up or move miscellaneous items that fall on the floor. And if you garden, the right tools can reduce your instances of pain. Ultimately, don’t worry about the nitty gritty. If you can’t bend to pick something up or complete a task, wait for someone to come home who can do it for you. Your well-being is more important than a perfect house!