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How To Safely Dispose of Contaminated Protective Items

In this temporary situation, we find ourselves having to adopt a more rigorous hygiene routine. But unfortunately, personal protective equipment like gloves and masks can quickly become contaminated. So today, Dr. Hubert Lee of CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists in Bellevue, WA, is sharing some recommendations for disposing of these items safely and properly.

Masks: Another predominant countermeasure against the spread of COVID-19 is wearing masks. Masks are typically supposed to be thrown away frequently. But with the current shortages taking place, many people are making their own with cotton masks and/or wearing the same mask for extended periods.

If you’re wearing a cloth mask, wash it each time you use it. Regular laundry detergent and hot water should do the trick, and you can add color-safe bleach as an added precaution. If wearing paper masks, they should be carefully removed and discarded after each use.

Gloves: Wearing the same gloves from one place to another, or using your phone while wearing gloves spreads germs, so it’s important to change them regularly. After safely removing your gloves, you can dispose of them in a trash can, not on the ground! To reduce waste, you can also simply wash your hands with hot, soapy water when you return home. If you visit multiple stores, wash your hands after each one.

Wipes: Despite being passed off as ‘flushable,’ most aren’t. Many municipal plumbing systems were not designed to handle flushed wipes. Even though many people stocked up on wipes after the toilet paper supply diminished, disinfectant wipes have also disappeared. But the only paper product that should be flushed down the toilet is toilet paper.

Disinfectants, hand sanitizer, and cleaning supplies: Hand sanitizers and household cleaning products are being used much more than usual. So what should you do with the packaging? It can be properly discarded in either trash cans or recycle bins, depending on the labels. Scouring pads and sponges should be thrown in the trash.

 

We hope you’re following these recommendations, and that you and your loved ones stay safe, healthy, and in good spirits! If you or a loved one is noticing the symptoms associated with COVID toes, or any other issues with your feet, contact Dr. Hubert Lee at CarePlus Foot & Ankle Specialists in Bellevue, WA today at (425) 455-0936.

Author
Dr. Hubert Lee

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