The next time you’re sitting on ‘the throne’, just imagine what it was like for our ancestors who did not have indoor plumbing… While there are remote areas today where the ‘outhouse’ is still in use, for most of us it is difficult to imagine a way-of-life during the time before modern conveniences of indoor plumbing, running hot & cold water, ‘paper towels’, dishwashers, ‘washing machines’, soaps and detergents of every variety, toilet paper, etc..

Instead of visiting the indoor ‘throne’, one would have to trudge outside to the outhouse (no matter the weather or time of day) and perform one’s duties. And it doesn’t stop there… someone had to be responsible for the dirty job of maintaining the situation.

While this article is not about the outhouse, it is about the importance of general cleanliness after the collapse, and the preparedness considerations which coincide with maintaining a clean and healthy way of life during such a time…

It is amazing how many people use ‘paper towels’ as their first choice to clean up a mess. Not only is it expensive (comparative to an ordinary washable towel) but it is not sustainable. You can stock up with paper towels, but when they run out – you’re out. Then what?

The answer is a good supply of a variety of washable towels ranging in size from small to large. Don’t stop there though… imagine if there’s no electricity and your washing machine doesn’t work. That’s right, you’ll need to wash them by hand. How will you do that?

You will need a variety of buckets and basins. But it doesn’t end there… you will also need a washboard of sorts, the ridges of which help to loosen out the ‘dirt’.

Do you have a water supply nearby (other than your faucet tap)? Do you have a means to collect it and store it? Do you even know where the nearest secondary water source is?

Oh, and what about soap? Do you have a variety of bar and liquid soaps stored up? Enough to last quite awhile?

What about plenty of clothes-line rope and clothes-pins for hanging your clean towels and clothes (you’re dryer doesn’t work)?

For every aspect of preparedness to do with maintaining sanitary conditions for cleaning, cleanliness and sanitation, just think about how you will go about doing it without today’s modern conveniences (just in case)…

Think about the things that will be especially important to have on hand to keep a clean and sanitary environment, perhaps without all the conveniences, disposables, and appliances that you’re used to today.

-Washing the dishes?
-Washing the clothes?
-Cleanup of counters, tables, spills?
-What else??

Here’s something to consider… today’s First Aid, antibiotics, doctors and hospitals, all contribute greatly to a longer ‘shelf life’ of we humans. During a time (not so long ago) you could easily die from an infection of an ordinary cut. Without such modern luxuries, how will you minimize infection from day-to-day activities? This will become a very important consideration. When your antibiotic cream runs out – then what?

What are your thoughts on this preparedness category (importance of cleanliness) and what are some ideas how to go about preparing or implementing behavioral changes to accommodate this?

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