When cleaning and disinfecting your home, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommends that you wear personal protective gear such as disposable gloves. Latex gloves, a common type of disposable glove, are likely what you're familiar with. Especially in a medical facility, this type of glove should be discarded after each use. However, if must reuse the gloves for non-hazardous activities, the World Health Organization (WHO) has information on how to disinfect used gloves before reuse.
The CDC states that "gloves should be discarded after each cleaning." Prior to their instructions for disinfecting used gloves, the WHO writes that "reusing gloves is not recommended." Some scenarios in which you might reuse latex gloves include crafting and light household cleaning; do not reuse if you have handled bodily fluids, food products, or similar substances.
If you absolutely need to clean them, here's how to get started.
Things You'll Need
- A clean, disinfected bucket
- Fresh water
- Soap or a mild detergent
- Personal protective gear such as an apron and thick gloves
Fill a clean, disinfected bucket with fresh soapy water.
Following the CDC's guidelines for safely removing gloves. You'll want to avoid touching your bare skin. Grasp the outside of one glove at the wrist, peeling the glove away from your body and pulling it inside out. Hold the glove you removed in your other gloved hand.
To peel off the second glove, place your fingers inside the glove at the top of your wrist and pull it away from your body while turning it inside out. The first glove you removed should be inside the second.
Place the gloves inside the bucket of soapy water.
Wash your hands with soap and water. Then, place your hands inside a thick pair of clean gloves to prevent contamination. Rubber gloves should work.
With thick gloves on, gently rub the latex gloves in the soapy water to remove any debris. Make sure they are covered with water and allow them to soak overnight.
Remove your thick gloves and wash your hands. Then, proceed to clean and disinfect the thick gloves, ensuring to wash your hands after as well. Instructions for this can be found here.
Wearing your thick gloves and an apron, remove the latex gloves from the bucket and rinse them thoroughly with clean water. At this point, you can check for holes by seeing if the water leaks out of the gloves. If they are ripped or there is a hole, discard them immediately.
Air dry the gloves, storing them in a clean, disinfected location. You will also want to wash your hands, and clean and disinfect both the thick gloves and the apron. Before placing the latex gloves back on your hands, you should use soap and water to wash your hands once more. The WHO also recommends placing talcum powder in dry gloves.
Do not reuse disposable gloves if you can help it. Don't wash and reuse any glove that is used for medical or hazardous chemical usage. You should also dispose of gloves after each use if caring for someone who has a virus, or if the gloves are soiled or ripped.
Never dry latex gloves in the clothes dryer.