Avoid Using Disinfectant Wipes On These Items

April 1, 2020

© Edith Layland | Dreamstime

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Antibacterial wipes are a time-crunched cleaner’s best friend! But in a world where finding disinfecting wipes is almost as hard as finding a four-leaf clover, you'll want to make sure you are using them correctly and there are lots of potentially surprising things that you shouldn’t use them to clean. For instance, you shouldn't use disinfecting wipes to clean children’s toys. While they do kill germs they also use chemicals that can be harmful to children if not used properly. Since kids are likely to put the toys in their mouths, you are better off cleaning them with soap and water, which works very well in keeping them germ-free. Resist using disinfecting wipes on anything that absorbs moisture. Disinfectant solutions often need to sit for several minutes to kill viruses and bacteria. If the surface is soft, such as foam or carpet, it won’t stay wet long enough to be truly effective. If you have to use multiple wipes to achieve the result, the moisture could damage the surface. Instead, use hydrogen peroxide, which is a good germ killer that won't damage soft surfaces. Combine a teaspoon of 3% hydrogen peroxide with a little cream of tartar and let it soak for a few minute before dabbing it off. Your bathroom sees a lot of bacteria day in and day out, and a quick swipe with an antibacterial wipe isn’t doing much to keep bacteria growth at bay. Again, the disinfectant needs to stay wet on the surface for a certain amount of time.  In the bathroom, it needs to remain wet for at least 10 minutes, while a wipe only has enough solution for up to five minutes.  So instead use disinfectant cleaners designed for the bathroom, which will stay wet for the appropriate amount of time. Finally, your hands. Never clean your hands with antibacterial wipes before or while eating, because the wipes leave a residue on the skin. Plus, not all the microbes and bacteria will wipe away and the alcohol it might contain will dry out your skin. Stop the spread of germs by washing your hands with soap and warm water.

SOURCE: Reader's Digest

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