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Sterilizing your sponge in the microwave

ISRegular cleaning of sponges and dishcloths is required to combat bacteria, but you must use caution when utilizing the microwave to sterilize these items.

By now, everyone is aware that the sponge and dishcloths you use to clean up kitchen and bathroom spills and cooking juices are filled with harmful bacteria.   In order to avoid exposing yourself and your family to bacteria, it is important that these items are disinfected regularly and discarded when appropriate.   Some people like to utilize their dishwasher to clean these items.   While this is somewhat effective, studies have shown that using the microwave is much more effective to kill all the bacteria. (See more info on these studies at these links.)

http://www.livescience.com/

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/

However, if you do plan on using your microwave, it is important that you take a few precautions in order to avoid injuring yourself, starting a fire and ruining your microwave.

•  Ensure that the sponge is sufficiently wet.   It needs to be wet in order to "cook" out the bacteria and also to avoid catching on fire.

•  Sponges should have no metallic content.   This could cause a fire or explosion in your microwave.

•  Two minutes of microwaving is enough time to kill the bacteria.

•  Finally, use caution when removing the sponge, as it will be very hot.

If you follow these steps and microwave your sponges every few days, you can avoid the frustration and dangers experienced by the individuals in this article and still enjoy the benefits of bacteria free sponges.

http://today.reuters.com/