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How to Disinfect Clothes After Stomach Flu

Submit an Entry: Your Laundry Questions and Answers

By Melinda

My Laundry Question

I have three daughters. 4,2 and 9 months. We are in the middle of our first family stomach flu. My two year old vomits on everything. I can bleach the towels I use to clean it up and feel comfortable I'm killing the germs but the clothes and the sheets and blankets with regular detergent afraid I'm not killing the germs. My water temp is about 120 degrees I mixed a load of vomit soiled clothes with some other clothes. I used pine sol and ran the washer with hot water 3 times. Are my clothes clean or can i spread the virus to my baby by wearing the clothes that were washed with the vomit soiled linens?

Share a Little Background Info

have three daughters. 4,2and 9 months. We are in the middle of our first family stomach flu. My two year old vomits on everything. I can bleach the towels I use to clean it up and feel comfortable I'm killing the germs but the clothes and the sheets and blankets with regular detergent afraid I'm not killing the germs. My water temp is about 120 degrees I mixed a load of vomit soiled clothes with some other clothes. I used pine sol and ran the washer with hot water 3 times. Are my clothes clean or can i spread the virus to my baby by wearing the clothes that were washed with the vomit soiled linens?

Lessons Learned

  • Yes. I already washed it I put a 1/2 cup of pine sol in the washer with regular detergent. I washed it in hot water and rinsed it and repeated the wash rinse cycle 3 or 4 times because I put too much pine sol in.

Mary Marlowe Leverette, About.com Laundry & Laundry Rooms, says:

Bless your heart! You have your hands full. I'm so sorry. Sick little ones are so sad.

You can take comfort in knowing that you are doing just the right thing with your laundry. Pine Sol is a good disinfectant for your laundry and kills common viruses. I have a good article on other disinfectants with information from Cornell University if you want to read more.

My only suggestion is after you clean up vomit or place a load of clothes in the washer, change your shirt before you hold the baby. That will prevent any transfer of germs that may have gotten on your clothes as you handled the soiled laundry.

Good luck and I hope everyone feels better soon.

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