Infections are spreading at an overwhelming rate. The need to disinfect surfaces and clothes is even more than before because of the pandemic. Bacterial and viral infections result in health issues and one of the primary reasons for the same is unhygienic conditions. It is essential to check disease prevention and disinfecting surfaces and clothes can help in the long run. So, now the important question that will pop into your mind is, how to disinfect clothes?
The good news here is that disinfecting is not a gruesome process. It is easy to do the same, provided you follow the simple tricks that are discussed in the article.
You must be thinking that how is it possible that garments can get infected? But it is possible.
- Clothes easily come in contact with bacteria, viruses, and fungi and thus catch the infection.
- If any member of the family is suffering from the flu, then it is important to disinfect their clothing and wash it separately.
- If you are handling biologically infected garments or clothes with medical scrubs, then these are exposed to infections. So, it is essential to wash/dry clean such linens to get rid of the infections.
However, experts also recommend that the users should wear gloves before handling such garments or bed linens. And it is highly advisable to dispose of the gloves after use.
Now, let us first see the difference between cleaning and disinfecting.
Removing dirt and germs from linens and surfaces is cleaning but there is no guarantee that the virus or bacteria is killed in the process.
Disinfecting, on the other hand, means killing germs, bacteria, and viruses. So, disinfecting the surfaces or linens can be done after cleaning the same too.
So, let us read the tips and tricks about how to disinfect clothes?
1. Use bleach as a disinfectant
Bleach is easily available in the market and it has an ingredient named sodium hypochlorite that helps in disinfecting clothes. You will find that bleach is an inexpensive product used to disinfect clothes.
You will also come across laundry detergents that have bleach in them. Fabrics like wool and silk cannot be washed or disinfected with bleach simply because bleach acts harsh on the colours and fades coloured clothes.
However, it is also important to understand a warning for using bleach. It is advised not to use bleach that is ammonia-based because it is dangerous. So, be careful when you buy bleach.
Only chlorine bleach is a disinfectant. Oxygen-based bleaches are not used for disinfecting clothes because they do not give the desired results.
For the best results, mix 1-2 tablespoons in half a bucket of water and immerse the required cloth in it for 5 minutes. The process is most likely done after cleaning it with liquid detergent,
2. Use wipes
Ethanol or bleach-based wipes are easy to find in the market and are effective in disinfecting clothes. Especially garments that are made of leather/faux leather/fur should not be washed with detergent. So, it is best if these are disinfected with wipes.
An important tip here is that you should dispose of the wipe after every single use so that you don’t use the same wipe for more than one garment. If you use a single wipe for multiple clothes, then you will be shifting the germs.
3. Use sanitizers
Thanks to the pandemic that made everybody familiar with sanitisers. Every household is familiar with a sanitiser but did you also know that sanitisers are also helpful to disinfect clothes. The right sanitiser has more than 60-70% alcohol in it because this is the permissible limit to act as a perfect sanitiser for killing viruses. It is said that ethanol in the sanitiser is effective because it can destroy the cell wall of bacteria/viruses.
4. Pressing and steaming
Yes, ironing the clothes is an effective and the simplest way to disinfect the clothes. A steaming press should have an ideal temperature between 248-302 degrees F to disinfect the clothes. Professional steaming of the clothes should be preferred to get the desired results.
5. Dip in boiling water
Giving hot treatment to the garment is also another ideal way to disinfect the clothes. Take boiling water in the bucket and immerse the clothes that require disinfection in it. Although the technique is not a good one for fragile clothes, it is an effective way to disinfect handkerchiefs and towels.
6. Use detergents specifically designed with textile disinfectant
You can easily find detergents in the market that are designed with textile disinfectants like Sanytol. If any detergent has this ingredient, then it can kill 99% of the germs present in the garments. It is effective in eliminating bacteria and leaving a fresh fragrance on the garment. It can also aid in the elimination of bad odours from the clothes. If you use it as a machine detergent, it helps sanitise the machine.
7. Hydrogen peroxide
This is another cheap ingredient that helps remove germs from the clothes. The best part is that the product does not cause damage to any type of fabric and it is advisable to pre-soak the garments in the product to get the desired results.
7. Bicarbonate of Soda
This is an effective ingredient in disinfecting the clothes. It also gives a pleasant smell to the clothes.
One of the most natural ways to keep clothes free of germs is to air them outside and allow them to get some sunlight. Though not all garments require direct sunlight, yet there are a couple of fabrics that can be given direct sunlight for 10 minutes.
Now you must be aware of the simple ways about how to disinfect clothes. These are simple tricks and yet give satisfaction to you because you are doing a good job for your family. You are trying your best to keep them away from viruses, bacteria, and germs. These are easy to follow, and the users need not invest in expensive products to get the required results. Disinfecting clothes have become an important step in recent times.