Proper Medical Scrub Care Tips for Nurses
One of the challenges of being a nurse is keeping your medical scrubs looking both clean and new. Because of the environment they are worn in, scrubs can easily become faded, worn out, or heavily stained, a look that no self-respecting nurse would want to be seen in by patients or coworkers. To keep your scrubs looking fresh and bright for as long as possible, we recommend using the following steps to care for your medical uniform:
- Pre-treat your scrubs before wearing: The first step in taking proper care of a new set of scrubs is to pre-treat them to prevent the color from fading due to later washes. The disinfecting process can be hard on the uniforms, and those that aren’t properly pre-treated will have their color stripped from them by repeated cleaning. To pre-treat your scrubs, wash them separate from your other laundry in cold water, using half a cup of vinegar instead of soap. The vinegar will help set the color and make the keep their fresh appearance longer.
- Only wear your scrubs at work: Sometimes it’s tempting to change into your work uniform at home to save time at the workplace, but keeping scrubs clean is too important an issue to justify wearing them outside the emergency room, hospital, or doctor’s office. Instead, transport your scrubs in a clean, sturdy plastic bag, preferably one that can be sealed, and only remove them once you are ready to change into them at work. This will help prevent stains and contamination that can render a pair of scrubs useless for hygienic medical work.
- Wash your scrubs twice: Scrubs need to be absolutely clean and disinfected by the time they are worn to work, which means that they should be washed extra carefully to remove all germs, grime, and other contaminants. The best way to do this is to wash your scrubs separately from all your other laundry, through two different cycles. For the first load, turn your scrubs inside out and wash them by themselves with cold water and detergent, after applying stain remover to any visible stains. Once this load is done, apply stain remover again to any stains that are still visible, and then wash your scrubs again, this time in warm water and ¾ cups color-safe bleach (be sure to follow the proper steps for your washer when adding bleach to the laundry). Once this second washing is complete, dry them for 30 minutes on the highest setting, and then iron them with a hot press; this will kill any bacteria that managed to survive the washing process.
- Wear a fresh pair of scrubs for every shift: When working in a medical office, it’s important to have a fresh pair of scrubs for every shift. By owning more than one pair of scrubs, you will make sure that you always have a fresh, disinfected pair ready to wear as soon as it’s needed, and you can save time and money by washing them all together at the end of the week.
Here at Prudential, we pride ourselves on providing medical workers with the highest quality scrubs available. When you combine our products with the above safe cleaning practices, you’ll be sure to have scrubs that stay clean and fresh for a long time. To learn more about our uniform purchasing and rental options, contact us today at 800-767-5536 to learn more.