How to disinfect safety glasses
How to disinfect safety glasses
Every day millions of Americans wear safety glasses to protect themselves from eye injuries. Thousands of children wear safety glasses in vocational and technology classes at our public schools. Much attention is given to the proper use and warnings related to eye injuries and prevention but little is given to the care, cleaning, and disinfecting of safety glasses. This is especially important for environments where safety glasses are shared between other people. This brief article will help us learn how to disinfect our safety glasses so they are safe and ready to use.
Why should I disinfect my safety glasses?
Some may ask why it is necessary to disinfect safety glasses? Why don’t I just clean them? When glasses are shared between people, there is a potential for cross-contamination between users. Cold, flu, or other germs can be transmitted by safety glasses. Blood or other bodily fluids may contain bloodborne pathogens that carry viruses including hepatitis or AIDS. It is important to treat any bodily fluids as potentially infectious. Cleaning and disinfecting safety glasses makes sense and promotes good health and safety hygiene practices. It is important to be aware of these types of hazards as they are not always visibly seen.
Should I clean my safety glasses before I disinfect them?
Yes, we suggest you clean your safety glasses with a mild detergent or cleaner to remove any dirt or debris from the safety glasses. This will remove most of the contaminants from the glasses. Be gentle when cleaning and scrubbing the glasses. Plastic and polycarbonate lenses tend to scratch easily. Do not use abrasives to clean the glasses. The water temperature should be at least 110 degrees.
What is the best solution to use to disinfect my safety glasses?
There are several inexpensive and easy-to-use household products that will do the job quickly and safely. Household bleach can be diluted with water to disinfect glasses. A ratio of 1 part bleach per thousand is ample to use according to Michigan State University. The same ratio can be used for ammonia and water or even tinctures of iodine and water. Completely immerse and soak the glasses in the disinfecting solution for at least 2 minutes and then rinse off with warm water. Be sure to rinse your glasses in warm water to remove any soap, cleaner, or disinfectant solution. Failure to remove the cleaners or disinfectants could cause film, haze, discoloration, and could even affect the integrity of some forms of plastic. Be sure they are rinsed off completely and dried with a lint-free cloth.
How often should I disinfect my safety glasses?
Safety glasses that are shared should be disinfected after every use. This will help reduce cross-contamination. If you are not sharing glasses, disinfecting only needs to occur as necessary. It is always a good idea to regularly inspect safety glasses before each use. Look for scratches or any other type of damage that may interfere with the safety performance and discard and replace as necessary.
MFASCO Safety Glasses & Eye Protection Resources:
Employers need to be able to maintain a clean working environment for their employees, and as part of the routine maintenance and care for your equipment, it is important to keep your seeing protection disinfected and sanitized. We have a number of resources available to help you keep stocked up on essential supplies, and maintain a clean working environment.
Eye Protection Products & Accessories:
Additional Resources for Workplace Eye Protection: