Microorganisms including bacteria fill our world. Almost everything we or animals touch - kitchen counters, bathroom fixtures, doorknobs, floors, appliance handles - are sure to have bacteria, some of which can cause severe illness if surfaces aren't cleaned and disinfected regularly.
Tiny, one-celled creatures, bacteria have been around for millions of years, even longer than humnas. They get nutrients directly from their environment in order to live. Some bacteria humans need in order to get nutrients into the body; these normally live in the intestine. Other bacteria reproduce inside the body and cause different infections - sore throats, ear infections, cavities and pneumonia, among others. Other bacteria are used in labs to make things like medicine and vaccines.
Bacteria in the Kitchen
The kitchen countertop is where you prepare your food, serve your food, and for many, a place where you spend most of your time while in the kitchen. However, something microscopic thrives there. You guessed it, bacteria. With all of the food and liquid that gets spilled on your countertop, bacteria are given all the nutrients they need to multiply. According to statistics by WebMD, 488 bacteria per square inch are found on your countertop. Wiping down your countertop simply does not get rid of all of that bacteria.
Many people come into our showroom wanting to consider granite counter tops for their full or partial kitchen remodels, without realizing that granite is pourous!
Kitchen faucets, cabinet knobs, appliance handles are additional prime locations bacteria can be found.
Bacteria in the Bathroom
The bath/shower mat keeps you from slipping as it grips the floor. It may also be hanging onto bacteria. The bathroom floor usually has more bacteria than other floors in your home. That combined with the sometimes steamy, moist nature of the bathroom, makes the floor area under your bathmat a great place for bacteria to reproduce.
The bathroom like the kitchen is filled with items that we and our family touch multiple times each day, where we sometimes without knowing leave bacteria where it can multiply. Counter tops, sponges, shower curtains, faucets, cabinet knobs, toilet seats and handles have all been proven to harbor bacteria in even the cleanest homes.
Breakthroughs in antimicrobial technology have provided the medical field with antimicrobial properties built into almost all areas from building materials, medical equipment, sanitizing systems, uniforms and patient dressings for many years.
Silver and cooper are standing out as the most well known antimicrobial agents being employed for antimicrobial properties in these products and materials. Silver is highly effective against bacteria and able to express wide-spectrum antimicrobial efficacy against both gram-positive and negative bacteria, and in some cases, yeast organisms. In addition, silver is noted for having negligible toxicity effects with humans and animals.
Recently these same antimicrobial agents are being employed for creating antimicrobial surfaces and products for our homes. Of course these products will still require regular cleaning, however powerful cleaning agents and disenfectants will no longer be needed, leaving a lower environmental impact!
Here at Kitchen Design Center, we are seeing a fastly increasing selection of antimicrobial products to offer our customers. Solid surface counter top materials such as Corian and Staron composite counter tops, Cambria, Pentel, MSI quartz counter tops are all non porous and reist the growth of bacteria with proper cleaning.
The following are a few products availble to our remodel customers that incorporate antibacterial properties:
*Wilsonart HD Laminates
*Moen Fixtures with Microban Finish
*Caliwell paints and coatings
*Soci copper sinks
*Formica's "Protect" Collection Laminates
*Kohler Toilet Seats
*Richelieu select group of cabinet knobs & pulls