Post # 1
…and I’m not talking about your routine cleaning.
My BFF is kind of in a rough spot. She is having to move out to her step-dad’s, which is actually better for her and her husband, but her step-dad lives like kind of a pig to put it bluntly. He’s disabled, so he never cleans and doesn’t take care of much, including himself. The last time the house was cleaned was 13 years ago, and he is a bachelor, so you can imagine what that place looks like. To give you an even better realization she went out to his place to eat and both of them got ill just looking at how messy and dirty it was. They couldn’t even finish their food, she said.
I offered to help her clean this Friday because I know this is super stressful for her, and she needs a friend. Plus it is a great opportunity for us to see each other during the holidays. Obviously this didn’t come at a very good time since I am 19 weeks pregnant, but that’s life.
I will NOT be doing any heavy lifting/moving or cleaning with toxic products (so no cleaning the bathroom or oven). The most I will be doing is dusting, vacuuming, and shampooing the carpets if I feel like I can handle that task.
I will be wearing gloves and a mask the whole time there, but is there anything else I should be aware of or do to better protect myself?
Post # 3
The mask and the gloves are a good move. If they’re going to be using oven cleaner or bleach just make sure the area is well ventilated.
If you see any whitish powdery substance on the walls, floor or carpet or see any dried animal feces you should probably leave. The whitish powdery stuff could be mold which is not good for anyone to be around, much less a pregnant woman.
Post # 4
We moved from a rental home to our first home while I was 13-15 weeks pregnant.. it took more than a week lol. But anyway neither our rental home nor new home were in that state of filth but it was a tremendous amount of work and cleaning. Especially Since our new home had been uninhabited for four years! Very dusty lots of cobwebs and general dirtiness. Definitely use masks and gloves and be cautious. Also do not over do it! I made that mistake and I was out of commission for days because of it. Be gentle with yourself it’s ok to step back and take a break even if you need to get out of the environment for a bit sometimes just leaving for a bit can help. Offer to go get food and drinks or supplies when they are needed. .ect. your friend will understand if you need a break she will be thrilled just to have such a thoughtful friend by her side. Good luck and congratulations on your LO
Post # 5
@megz06: He doesn’t have any pets, does he? If so, I’d probably not go if he has a cat, just for the toxoplasmosis risk.
Post # 6
@PinkPandaBear: Exactly what I was thinking, watch out for mold and excriment. Also, take frequent breaks away from the area (i.e. outside) for fresh air and don’t eat in the home until it is cleaned.
You are a good friend!
Post # 7
We’re in the process of moving and cleaning everything – I bought an air purifier to help with all the dust, for the most part the biggest issue for me being pregnant and cleaning is I can’t really bend like I used to (I get very short of breath) and I tire easily so just make sure you don’t over do it.
Post # 8
@PinkPandaBear: Shows how much I know. I didn’t even know mold would be whitish powdery substance. Good to know!!
@ames12708: Thank you. We are very excited. Sounds like your place was a little rough too! I will make sure to take some breaks. I won’t be there for very long. I am going Friday after work, so at the most, I will be out there for 4 hours cleaning.
@IAmTheShadow: He does not have any pets. I probably wouldn’t avoid it if he did because my parents have 5 cats, and I don’t avoid their place, BUT I wouldn’t clean a litter box or pick up any feces (not clean up any pee marks).
@KH: Good call on not eating until after the house is cleaned. This is going to be a weeks long project, so I am going to eat before I go, so I won’t even have to think about it there. Doesn’t sound like food will be appetizing after checking the place out anyway. Thanks!
Post # 9
@cora_123: Thanks. I will make sure to take breaks and not overdo it. I can still move pretty good, but I know my limitations. I think my friend is more concerned than I am. She was like, “You are not doing any lifting, moving, or cleaning with products. And if you need to leave at any point don’t feel bad. Just go. And if you so much as do ANYTHING you’re not supposed to I will beat you with a stick” lol. So she looking out for me thank goodness.
Post # 10
I agree–keep an eye out for mold, keep it well-ventilated.
And if you start feeling sick/dizzy/queasy, get out of there! No being a hero!
Post # 11
@megz06: That’s so nice of you to help! Definitely take it easy, keep the windows open for lots of fresh air, drink lots of water etc!
Post # 12
@megz06: I learned about this recently, after we bought a house and discovered the basement was covered in the stuff. It was white and powdery. Mold can also be black or green. If there is black powder stuff everyone needs to leave immediately because it can be extremely harmful if inhaled.
Post # 13
Great idea with the mask and gloves. I hope the mask is a P100! There’s all kinds of crap in even regular house dust for example, and once stirred up it can takes hours to resettle even if the air looks clear, but with gloves and a P100 mask on when inside, it won’t be entering your body, and when you get home, just toss your clothes into the laundry straightaway, and have a quick shower. That way the stuff in your hair etc. is gone too.
I’d suggest making sure you’ve always got lots of water, a nice seat somewhere to rest when you need to (not inside the place being cleaned, ideally, because when you’re resting you’ll likely want to take off your mask) and taking it slow. If anything starts to hurt, take a break, and consider whether maybe that job is not one you can do right now.
Cleaning slowly and safely without chemicals should not harm your pregnancy at all. We don’t have to just lie prone for 9 months 🙂 We just have to be a bit more gentle and careful with our bodies, both for ourselves and for our precious cargo 🙂