Personal and Household Hygiene

Personal hygiene - product photo

Some of the routine things we do (or don’t do) every day matter more to our health than we may think.

The benefits of good personal and household hygiene are real. You feel better! And you are healthier too. Did you know handwashing reduces the risk of respiratory infections? Or that daily brushing and flossing your teeth avoids painful cavities and toothaches and seriously reduces bad breath? 

Since the start of the semester, which of the following hygiene issues have you dealt with?


  • Dental cavities
  • Athlete’s foot
  • Cold/flu
  • Body odor
  • Other?


  • Pests/ants/bed bugs
  • Smelly room
  • Roommate stress due to hygiene issues

Hygiene activities

What should I do every day?

  • Brush your teeth two or more times per day. Floss once a day.
  • Always wash hands after using the restroom, upon returning home, and before/after touching food. 
  • Take a shower every day, wearing shower sandals if using a shared bathroom.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth to prevent the spread of germs.
  • Clean up dishes, throw away scraps, and properly store food leftovers that could develop foodborne bacteria or attract bugs and rodents.

What should I do weekly?

  • Clean your living spaces, kitchen, and any high-touch surfaces.
  • Vacuum and sweep your floors
  • Take out the trash, recycling, and compost.
  • Do laundry and clean all linens you used in the week.
  • Kept up roommate/housemate agreements about cleaning our space.
  • Assess your hygiene and set goals for the upcoming week.

What should I do each semester?

  • Know and stock up on your resources (e.g. information, supplies) for when you’re busy studying for midterms, sick, or have problematic situations/emergencies, etc. 
  • Be up to date with ALL vaccines.  
  • Do self-check and get professional periodic screenings and exams. 
  • Create roommate agreements that support personal and household hygiene. Check-in monthly to give and receive feedback.