First, and perhaps most importantly, it is important for employers and managers to inform their employees and staff of the risks associated with being exposed to different chemicals and what steps and tools they can utilize to minimize their exposure risks. To their credit, chemical suppliers are doing their part to minimize the risks associated with chemical usage and are beginning to fully embrace greener options which benefit not only the environment but also put lessen contaminants that can damage the human body. That being said, proper PPE will also be necessary to protect the worker, not only from chemicals but also from any germs or bacteria that could be present on the surfaces they are cleaning. There are 3 main ways contaminants can get into the human body; through the skin (1), the nose (2) and the mouth (3).
The first (and obviously largest concern) is chemical exposure on the skin, harsh chemicals (such as some hospital grade disinfectants) can actually burn the user due to their pH. The first barrier of defense against skin contact and contamination is wearing disposable gloves. WWS offers Nitrile, Vinyl, Latex and Poly disposable gloves. The first consideration should be whether or not anyone who will be wearing the gloves has a latex allergy (since that will obviously rule some out). The second consideration should be what chemicals and tasks they’ll be completing while wearing the gloves. Some types of gloves will protect from certain chemicals while others will not. Click HERE for comprehensive list of the various chemicals your employees might encounter and what gloves types protect against them.
To protect from chemical exposure via the nose or mouth it really is quite simple. The first, and quite obvious, protective measure to take is to not directly inhale or digest any chemicals. Obviously that won't be much of an issue so the next step is to don proper masks and respirators (if necessary) to further obstruct chemicals from entering the human body. There are many different mask and respirator options out there so it is best to consult the professionals at Weinstein Wholesale Solutions for assistance in selecting the best option for you and your staff.
It is also important to remember to protect the eyes as they are quite sensitive to various chemicals. It is easy (and recommended) to wear protective eyewear when handling strong chemicals not only to protect the area but also for the comfort of the employee. Here at WWS we offer not only protective glasses but goggles as well.
Beyond donning the proper, PPE it is also important to avoid exposure when removing the protective equipment. It is very easy to inadvertently get exposed to chemicals while taking off gloves or other protective equipment. Make sure to remove gloves by only touching unexposed material on the inside of the gloves, the guidelines recommended by the CDC can be accessed HERE. With a little practice it will become second nature.
As always if you have any questions or concerns about proper PPE usage please don't hesitate to contact your Weinstein Wholesale Solutions Sales Representative, we're happy to help.