Biohazards are substances or materials hazardous to the health of humans because they can quickly transfer disease. Unfortunately, biohazards can be found in many homes. These include potentially toxic materials, radioactive, or infected with blood-borne pathogens, such as hepatitis B and C and HIV/AIDS.
Home biohazards require special cleaning and disposal methods and professional services in severe cases. While some biohazards are easily visible, others, like blood-borne pathogens, need laboratory testing to be detected.
Common Biohazards in the Home
1. Animal Waste, Such as Feces and Vomit
After picking up animal waste with gloves or a plastic bag, seal the excrement in another plastic bag, and throw it into your garbage can. Wash your hands after disposing of the waste.
2. Feces and Vomit of Any Kind
Clean with disinfectant wipes after a sick person uses the bathroom or handles food. Wash your hands afterward.
3. Dirty Diapers
Handle diapers (both humans and pets) carefully since they are biohazards that can carry disease-causing microorganisms (pathogens) like hepatitis A virus (HAV), rotavirus, shigella, norovirus, toxoplasmosis, and E. coli. After removing the diaper, put it in a plastic bag before throwing it out. Wash your hands after disposing of them.
4. Dirty Razor Blades
These can carry various microorganisms, including “Staphylococcus aureus,” salmonella, pseudomonas aeruginosa, and “Escherichia coli.” Always dispose of them in a puncture-resistant container such as an empty bleach bottle.
If you find mold growing in your home, remove it carefully before using any cleansers or disinfectants to clean surfaces. Use protective gloves (such as rubber ones) and a face mask, then throw them away when you’re done.
For serious infestations, spraying bleach on moldy surfaces is not enough. Plus, it causes damage to your home’s structure if not properly cleaned. Contact a reliable company for a total cleanup and avoid further damage to your home.
Make sure to choose a reputable company in your community, as mold removal needs immediate attention. Ask for a referral from the people around you who have used these services in the past, or go online and search for “mold damage removal near me.” This way, you can eliminate unnecessary search results.
6. Insect or Rodent Droppings
These are common in homes with pets or wild animals nearby. If you find mouse poop in your home, do not panic. Wear disposable rubber gloves to collect the droppings with paper towels carefully. Place them in a plastic bag before throwing them away into an outdoor garbage receptacle. Wipe down all surfaces with disinfectant spray.
7. Cat Litter
Cat litter should always be disposed of daily to prevent odor and excess moisture. The moist environment created by cat litter is an ideal breeding ground for pathogens, such as “Salmonella” and “E. coli.” To avoid illness caused by pathogens, wear protective gloves when changing the litter box and wash your hands afterward.
8. Blood or Body Fluids
These biohazard wastes may contain pathogens. All blood is considered biohazardous, but it is crucial to watch out for blood-borne diseases. These could be human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) and hepatitis B virus (HBV), spreading through contact with infected bodily fluids.
Know how to handle a spill involving these materials immediately. Use personal protective equipment, dispose of the material following local regulations, and sterilize any surfaces or objects that have been contaminated. If possible, call biohazard cleanup experts, like PuroClean, right away. They are highly trained and experienced, offering biohazard cleanup and dehumidification and drying process services.
9. Dead Animals Found in the House
Dead animals you can find in your home may be infected with anthrax or rabies, so avoid handling them yourself. Contact your local animal control department to remove the animal and dispose of it.
10. Dirty Dishes
Dirty dishes used for raw meat, eggs, or poultry may contain “Salmonella” organisms that can cause severe illness if ingested. Wash these items carefully before reusing them and handle them with disposable rubber gloves.
11. Dirty Laundry by a Sick Person
Dirty laundry used by a sick person can spread viruses such as norovirus, rotavirus, and influenza A virus (IAV) if not handled properly before washing. After a person becomes ill with a respiratory illness, wait until fever-free for at least 24 hours without medications to launder their clothes. While waiting, place all soiled laundry in a plastic bag and put it in an outdoor garbage receptacle away from people.
Hiring Professionals for Biohazard Cleanup
While you can clean some non-infectious biohazards at home by following the steps above, it’s always best to call a reliable restoration company for help. These professionals know when not to avoid touching anything with bare hands. Some people are unaware that many “safe” places where they put their fingers are dangerous after biohazard contamination.
For example, blood-borne pathogens are infectious and can easily contract through unprotected contact. But experts use effective biohazard containment methods to contain the contamination away from non-infected areas. This ensures that any dirt will not be brought outside of the affected area, reducing the risk of your family’s exposures to contaminants.
Look for PuroClean if you’re hiring a professional Metro West Area water damage remediation company.