How to Properly Clean Your Phone During the Coronavirus Outbreak


During the coronavirus crisis, people are being extra cautious about sanitizing their hands.

But while washing for 20 seconds has been a top recommendation for the last couple weeks, people have ignored an unexpected coronavirus accomplice: their phones.

"Your cellphone is a modern day 'hotspot'; it makes no sense to clean your hands and not wipe down your phone," said ABC News' chief medical correspondent Dr. Jennifer Ashton.

Coronavirus declared a pandemic

On Wednesday, the World Health Organization declared the coronavirus outbreak a "pandemic", with over 120,000 testing positive for the virus around the world.

The outbreak that began in China nearly three months ago has now infected more than 1,000 people in the United States.

Germs on your phone's surface

Whether you're texting, talking or scrolling, your phone's surface carries germs.

Dr. Ashton said it may be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has a virus on it. She noted that this is not thought to be the primary way the virus spreads.

However, according to the World Health Organization, "studies suggest that coronaviruses (including preliminary information on the COVID-19 virus) may persist on surfaces for a few hours or up to several days."

How to correctly disinfect your phone

The WHO said if a person thinks their surface may be infected, you must clean it with disinfectant to kill the virus and protect yourself from others. The organization also advises cleaning your hands with soap and water and using an alcohol-based hand rub. People should also avoid touching their eyes, mouth, and nose.

Apple also recently shared succinct but details instructions on how to correctly clean their products.

"Using a 70 percent isopropyl alcohol wipe or Clorox Disinfecting Wipes, you may gently wipe the hard, nonporous surfaces of your Apple product, such as the display, keyboard, or other exterior surfaces," the tech company recommended.

They continued: "Don't use bleach. Avoid getting moisture in any opening, and don't submerge your Apple product in any cleaning agents. Don't use on fabric or leather surfaces."

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