How Not to Accidentally Harm Yourself When Cleaning Your Office

prevent accidents when cleaning

The title of today’s blog may sound particularly morbid, but considering the consequences, all of us shouldn’t hold back in exercising caution when handling or working with cleaning agents that may potentially cause you harm as you tend to your office needs. 

We dig through the most common concepts of cleaning, its dangers, misconceptions, answering questions about getting a sore throat from cleaning products, safety measures, and basically just how not to accidentally poison yourself while cleaning your office. 

What are the most common cleaning misconceptions?

Unfortunately, the most obvious ideas we know of cleaning are also the most common misconceptions that contribute to a cycle of malpractice and misinformation, creating a potentially harmful environment that poses a threat to the safety of everyone exposed to the space. 

The use of bleach

Ahh yes, the ubiquitous white bottle with a red cap has been present in every household since the beginning of time. And for the longest time, people have been using it the wrong way. Bleach is a highly toxic chemical that requires proper care and caution when in use. Inhaling high amounts of the fumes bleach gives off can make you feel queasy, and cause lightheadedness, and trigger breathing problems. This is why sufficient ventilation must be ensured when working with bleach. Open windows and doors, and if possible, work outdoors. 

Moreover, bleach must not be mixed with other chemicals, as doing so can produce dangerous and deadly gasses. 

You can only mix bleach with water, no exceptions. 

The use of disinfecting spray

During the pandemic, the popularity and sales of disinfecting spray have increased. Unfortunately, so did its incorrect use. 

A lot of people think it is okay to just use it on the body and on pets. But this is where most have got it wrong. A disinfectant spray is designed for use on surfaces. 

Moreover, while it is indeed designed to disinfect most hard surfaces, a disinfectant spray can cause material damage, and thus, is not recommended for use on painted wood, leather, silk, or acrylic plastic. 

Mixing chemicals and other cleaning products

Some chemicals from a cleaning product may react intensely with a certain ingredient from another cleaning product, and this reaction could produce fumes that may inherently harm or cause you difficulty in breathing. And thus, people must avoid mixing different cleaners altogether, thinking that this would create a more powerful cleaning agent. Yes, it does create a powerful agent, powerful enough to harm you or even kill you. 

In other cases, if you’re unsure about a certain product’s use, make sure to proceed only with caution. Spot-test it on a tiny, unnoticeable area and see if it reacts negatively on the surface. 

What are chemicals and cleaning products that you shouldn’t mix?

As a general rule, it is never okay to mix cleaning products together. You have no idea what kind of problem you’re getting yourself into. As part of caution, here are the ingredients that you should not find yourself mixing together.

  • chlorine bleach
  • ammonia
  • alcohol
  • hydrogen peroxide

Unfortunately, these ingredients are way too common and are often found in most of your cleaning products, so always check the labels. 

Sequential cleaning 

dangers of mixing cleaning products and incorrect sequential cleaning

While mixing chemicals and cleaning products is one matter of concern, you should also be careful of sequential cleaning, or the use of one product after another on the same surface. It’s less disconcerting than the latter, but it’s still something you definitely have to keep in mind. 

To be safe, utilize only one product intended for a surface at a time. If you need to use two different products, check the ingredients to make sure that these won’t create a harmful reaction when used after another. 

Can you get a sore throat from cleaning products? 

A random question, you might think, but the truth is yes, you can get a sore throat from cleaning products if the product is accidentally swallowed or inhaled. It can cause a burning sensation or irritation on the mouth and throat, as well as trigger coughing. 

When in contact with the skin, it can cause burning, itching, and even leave blisters. 

How can you prevent dangerous situations from arising when handling highly corrosive cleaning products? 

In the age of information and disinformation, reading and learning go a long way. The same goes for safety against cleaning products. Learning about the safe and correct use of each product saves you a lot of trouble. 

Here’s what you need to look for when checking labels. 

Usage and directions

The product’s packaging should include proper use of the product as well as directions on how to use it. You can resort to an online search if the information is in small print and cannot be read well. Make sure to follow these directions when in use, and do not try experiments.


You may want to watch out for the three big ingredients such as sodium hypochlorite (chlorine bleach), isopropanol (isopropyl alcohol), and ammonium hydroxide (household ammonia). Again, these ingredients are a deadly mix and should not be used together.

Green cleaning

To ease your mind from the burden of cleaning products that contain chemicals that could harm you in the long run, you can always choose green cleaning or opt for eco-friendly cleaning products. Made of natural ingredients, these cleaning products are safer, better, and healthier for you.  If it’s good for the environment then it’s definitely good for you. 

The role of commercial cleaning

Office cleaning services can always be done by professionals so that the burden of the cleaning woes is taken off your shoulder. However, there is still some responsibility on your end. 

If you’re hiring commercial cleaning providers for your office or establishment in New London County, Connecticut, it’s vital that you know how their cleaning process works, as well as the products and tools that they use, to ensure that you not only get a clean space. Along with the cleanliness, the overall safety of everyone is something that you should keep in mind.