What to know about doing your laundry during the time of Covid 19
We all know how important it is to frequently wash our hands with soap and water (or use hand sanitizer) and we’re cleaning the house around the clock to prevent the spread of Coronavirus. We’re more stressed than ever about keeping everything clean and everyone healthy, but what about when it comes to doing our laundry? Experts say there are ways we can reduce our risk of viral exposure when it comes to cleaning our clothes.
At the time of writing, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention say people can more or less stick to their usual laundry routine: “Launder items (if possible) according to the manufacturer’s instructions. Use the warmest appropriate water setting and dry items completely.” It’s recommended you do this for clothing, towels and bedding. You may want to save your delicates that can’t withstand high temperatures for another time. (Source: Treehugger)
Social distancing and minimizing your exposure to other people is still the best way to protect yourself since the coronavirus travels through respiratory droplets.
There’s not much information on how long the virus can survive on clothing. Experts recommend changing out of clothing you’ve worn outside your home. If you touched a contaminated surface with your clothes or if someone sneezes or coughs on you, there’s a chance you might bring that back home. It’s also a good idea to take off your shoes when you enter the home. (Source: Dr. Angelique Corthals, a biomedical researcher and professor of pathology at John Jay College, New York Times)
You can wear gloves while handling the laundry if you like but it’s more important to wash your hands after you’ve finished throwing your clothes in the washer. Use a washable laundry liner in your laundry basket if you have one so you can toss that in the laundry as well.
For those of us using common laundry facilities like shared laundry rooms in apartment buildings or laundromats, there are always more questions and concerns. Best practices may change as we learn more about Covid 19. (See New York Times for more information)
There’s a silver lining for those of us who want to minimize our chemical exposure to chemicals found in everyday laundry detergent. For all loads of laundry you can continue to use your plant based laundry detergents – since no detergents, synthetic chemical-laden or otherwise seem to affect the virus. (Source: Treehugger) Remember to disinfect the inside of your laundry basket. Don’t forget to wash articles of clothing you may not wash regularly, such as spring jackets, gloves, mittens, hats and scarves especially if you work in a health care setting or after a trip to the grocery or drug store.
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