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Caregiving: Reducing Germs and Infection in the Home

Table of Contents


Germs and infection can spread easily in the home. This may happen when items around the house become soiled or when you come into contact with body fluids, such as blood or urine. A person's cough or sneeze can spread germs too.

Washing your hands often can help you keep germs and infection from spreading. Keeping the home clean can help too. To help reduce germs and avoid infections, make sure to disinfect all parts of the home. "Disinfecting" means using soap or another cleaner to get rid of germs that can cause infection.

Bathroom and kitchen tips

General cleaning tips

Here are some other tips for reducing germs in the home:

Avoiding infections from others

When you can, avoid having people in your home who are sick. And ask all people in the home to cover their mouths with a tissue or with the inside of the elbow when they cough or sneeze. Throw away used tissues and empty the trash often.

Wash your hands often and wear a mask if you are around people who have colds or the flu.

Make sure to wash bedding often, especially when someone is sick.

You can reduce the chances of spreading infection by not sharing food, drinks, and personal items such as towels, washcloths, toothbrushes, and underclothes.

Credits for Caregiving: Reducing Germs and Infection in the Home

Current as of: October 31, 2022

Author: Healthwise Staff
Medical Review:
Kathleen Romito MD - Family Medicine
Elizabeth T. Russo MD - Internal Medicine
Gayle E. Stauffer, RN - Registered Nurse

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