15 Essential Facts That Will Be Useful In Your Everyday Life

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With internet access readily available at our fingertips, we have unlimited access to more than 1 million exabytes of information. Still, we manage to indulge ourselves into the constant noise of social media and the 24-hour news cycle. This can be frustrating at times since we are not being productive with the amount of time we spend on the internet. So, we have gathered some practical tips to tidbits that can help you out in your everyday life. Here are some essential facts that everyone should know.

1. You can blur your house on Google’s street view.

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Image: Johnson

If you are someone who loves privacy, and want your house to not be displayed to the entire world, then you can have it blurred on Google’s street view. In order to do that, go to your house, click on it, and then click “report a problem” at the bottom of the screen. You can also do this with your face or your car.

2. You should throw away the cotton in your medication bottles.

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Image: Kelly Sikkema

It’s common to find cotton balls or desiccant silica gel packets inside bottles or packages. Cotton balls or desiccant packets act as a drying agent and also prevent things like clumping, moisture-causing damage, and breeding grounds for mold or mildew. But they are only meant to help during shipping and once you open the bottle, you should dispose the cotton ball or desiccant packets immediately since they can collect moisture and cause the contents to deteriorate faster.

3. There’s an easy way to calculate a tip without the help of a calculator.

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Image: Karolina Grabowska

When you are eating out at a restaurant and assuming you want to provide a 20% tip for good service, just move the decimal point one digit to the left and then double that number. For instance, if your total bill is for $45.50, you move the decimal to the left, which gives you $4.55. Double that number, and you’ve got $9.10; a 20 percent tip calculated in seconds. It’s that easy!

4. You should always sleep with your door closed.

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Image: Lillian Grace

In the event of a fire, sleeping with your doors closed will help protect you from smoke and toxic fumes. Research from UL’s Firefighter Safety Research Institute (FRSI) shows that closing your bedroom door also helps prevent a fire from spreading, giving you ample time to find a way out.

5. Mosquitoes are attracted to certain colors.

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Image: Pragyan Bezbaruah

Summer is fast approaching, which means that it’s bringing mosquitos along with it. While we use repellents and other devices to try and keep them away, they don’t always work. A study published in the National Library of Medicine however shows that there are a few additional things we can do; such as not wear darker colors during the evening. According to the study, mosquitos were more attracted to those who wore darker colors than white. The study also tells us that the critters are attracted by heat and since darker colors attract more light and heat, it’s best to wear light colored clothes when they are mostly active.

6. Phones are dirtier than toilets.

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Image: Jenny Ueberberg

Our phones are an indispensable part of our daily lives. Without it, life would surely be difficult. We are able to get tasks such as pay bills, check status of our orders or even get a ride with just a few touches. It however turns out that they are also dirtier than a toilet. According to a study published in the NCBI, secondary school students’ phones contained high levels of bacterial contamination. So, next time you are cleaning your house, you might want to use antibacterial wipes on your phone as well.

7. Snacking before bedtime can often lead to having nightmares in your sleep.

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Image: Kahfiara Krisna

A study published in the NCBI says that there’s a relationship between food intake before bed time and our sleep pattern. While staying up late can make us feel hungry and we think a quick snack before bed won’t hurt, it actually causes us to have nightmares. According to the study, “food intake during the nocturnal period is correlated with negative effects on the sleep quality of healthy individuals”.

8. You can’t breathe and swallow simultaneously.

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Image: Adrienn

According to registered psychiatric nurse James Steinmetz, “this is because the food and fluids we swallow and the air we breathe in both travel down the same part of our throat.”

9. Sharp knives are safer than dull knives.

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Image: Thirdman

When you use a sharp knife, your chances of hurting yourself is low since you only have to apply a small amount of pressure when using them. Dull knives, however, not only makes the job harder but the resistance between the dull blade and the food’s surface suddenly gives way, increasing the chances of hurting yourself.

10. If you ever get sprayed by a skunk, tomato juice won’t help.

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Image: Bryan Padron

Instead of wasting cans of tomato juice make a mixture of dish soap, peroxide, and baking soda. The skunk spray is an oil, which your kitchen dish soap is designed to remove and the peroxide and baking soda add plenty of oxygen to the mix to help get rid of the smell.

11. Wikipedia is actually downloadable.

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Image: Jessica Lewis

For some of us, Wikipedia has been a lifeline, providing us with any and all information. Did you know that Wikipedia is also downloadable? You can actually download the entirety of Wikipedia and keep it on a USB drive for easy access.

12. Wikipedia can also work as a tour guide for you.

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Image: Rafael Cisneros Méndez

Wikipedia has a “Nearby” function and if you allow Wikipedia to know your location, it can provide you with pages about subjects relevant to where you are.

13. People with friends live longer.

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Image: Kimson Doan

According to researchers at Michigan State University, people with active social networks and close friends they talk to live longer than people who rely only on family. So, try to make some time to meet up with your friends, even if it is just for a coffee.

14. Most spreadsheets don’t spellcheck.

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If you ever use a spreadsheet software, just remember that most of them don’t perform the basic operation of checking for spelling mistakes. So, before you turn in some important work relation information, be sure to run a spellcheck manually.

15. Never consume snow to stay hydrated.

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Image: Cristian Tarzi

If you ever take a trip into the wilderness or are stranded and in need of water, don’t ever consume snow. Not only does it require your body to use more energy to convert something from a solid to a liquid, it will also cause your body temperature to drop; making you prone to hypothermia.

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