How to Protect your Baby from Germs: 3. Protect your baby from Indirect Contact Germs

To Protect Your Baby from Germs Transmitted by Indirect-Contact:

Indirect-Contact occurs by touching an item or surface (carpeting, doorknobs, dirty dishes, etc.) that is infected with germs. These tips will help reduce your baby’s indirect-contact with germs.

Shoes: Leave your shoes at the door. On any typical sidewalk you’ll find traces of urine and feces from various animals, residue from insecticides & cleaning products, food waste, saliva, sweat, and the decaying remains of various fauna.

Add to this microbial stew the germs you stepped on at the public restroom, or on the sewer grate, and you have a veritable army of germs eager to infect your floors, your carpet and eventually your baby.

Keep a pair of “indoor-only shoes” to change into when you get home. Ask guests to remove their shoes, keeping them in a designated area out of reach from your baby.

Anti-microbial wipes: These are very effective in removing germs from household objects such as toys, drawer or cabinet handles, phones, toilet handles and doorknobs.

Avoid disinfectant sprays. They may irritate your baby’s nose and throat. If you use a chemical disinfectant on an object your baby will later touch, be sure to rinse it with water after disinfecting.

Be extra vigilant in your wiping if you or a family member is ill or contagious.

Sterilize Bottles & Pacifiers: When purchasing new bottles, nipples or pacifiers, buy more than one, and choosemodels that are dishwasher safe. Before using a new bottle, nipple, or pacifier, boil it for five minutes.

Before each use, wash bottles and pacifiers in the dishwasher or use hot, soapy water with a cold rinse. If anything your baby would put in their mouth falls and touches the floor do not give it back to your baby without a new wash. Unfortunately when it comes to germs, the “five second rule” is simply untrue.

Textiles: Germs love to hide out on your fabrics, many of which – such as drapes, often go overlooked when it comes to cleaning time.

Lessen your cleaning time by getting rid of any heavy curtains or drapes and opting for hard wood floors instead of carpeting if possible. Area rugs are much easier to keep clean.

Wash your clothing, towels, tablecloths, curtains and any other common household textiles frequently. Always use  hot, soapy water (or with a disinfectant, like bleach) to prevent germ buildup.

Wash your baby’s laundry separately from the rest of your family. Without a disinfectant like bleach, soiled adult clothes such as underwear can transfer germs to your baby’s garments.

Once a week, after frequent use or after washing clothing from an ill family member, run a full cycle while the washer is empty. Use the hottest water setting and use bleach to disinfect the inside of the washer.

If there is a newborn in your home, be sure to check out our own Antibacterial Baby Products to see how they can help protect your baby from common infections.

Furniture: For disinfecting upholstered furniture, use a solution of tea-tree oil (a natural disinfectant) and water. Add 1 quart of water to a spray bottle, then add about 20 drops of tea tree oil.

Apply solution to a small and hidden area first, to ensure that the mixture will not damage your upholstery. If there is no adverse effect on the fabric the next day, you can safely spray the entirety of the furniture. Allow it to air dry by opening the windows.

Disinfect upholstered furniture at least once per month, more frequently if a family member is sick.

Food: Thoroughly wash counters, utensils, sinks and any others surfaces with soap and hot water after preparing meals to remove any microbes left behind from contaminated food – especially uncooked poultry.

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