25 answers

Bleach at Daycare

On Thursday my son came home from daycare with the sleeves of his shirt bleached. The next morning I asked the director about it and she said "Oh, the teachers wipe down the changing table with bleach between each child, they just must not have wiped it completely before they put him up there. They know they are supposed to wipe it, but about once a month this happens. Sorry." Am I overreacting to be upset about this? I am not happy that his shirt is ruined, but aside from that he probably also got bleach on his skin and that upsets me more. The director's relaxed attitude is also a little bothersome. Do any of you know if they are required to do the bleach thing because of health code or something? Is there a less toxic, more environmentally friendly alternative that I could suggest to the director? Thanks for your help!

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i worked in daycare centers before and the only time we used bleach was to clean mats and things like that when the kids were asleep. we couldnt even have it out while the kids were up. But we did have to use a sanitizing spray on the mat when we changed them. some amount of clothes stains are expected, paint, glue, ice cream on special days, juice, etc. bleach should NOT be one of them. Random fact for you, the USA is one of the few countries left that still has bleach as an over the counter legal substance. in other countries it is considered a biohazard and requires the use of gloves, a mask, and protective clothing. that stuff is awful and causes a ton of health concerns. I actually have a bunch of info that i have put together on health concerns and green benefits, etc. If you want, i would be more than happy to send the info over to you to print out and take to the director. i dont know how much good it will do, because cleaning with bleach is so cheap, but its worth a shot!

2 moms found this helpful

I wouldn't like this either and I do have a more environmentally friendly alternative, but any germ killer will be strong and children should be protected accordingly. You are welcome to message me for a link.

Just the fumes from bleach can be harmful. I wouldn't over worry this one time event but yes I would voice my concerns to the school.

2 moms found this helpful

They are using it with way too much bleach. I worked at a daycare and it is required but it is supposed to be two tablespoons bleach to a full spray bottle of water. At that concentration it wouldn't bleach clothes I know cause I've accidentally got some on my clothes numerous times. The director should know this I can't believe he wouldn't care.

1 mom found this helpful

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I'd be more concerned about your child's health than a shirt, and it sounds like that is the bigger concern for you based on your post.

Bleach is cheap and an effective disinfectant which is probably why it's used. They should be required or at least recommended by licensing to disinfect the changing table surface between each diaper change. In addition, the bleach and water solution should be 1 tablespoon (bleach) per gallon of water and should be left on the surface for a period of 2 minutes and then wiped dry or allowed to air dry in order to disinfect properly. If the solution is bleaching your son's shirt, not only is the concentration too strong, but it's likely that their procedure isn't really effective anyway.

But if they are using a bleach solution on the table you can probably bet that they are using it on other things as well including, toys, table surfaces, high chairs etc... that's a lot of contact through both fumes and potential oral ingestion. You'll find a lot of research indicating the dangers of using bleach, and you'll also find information stating the efficacy and safety of it.

People will probably bash me for saying so, but I don't believe that bleach is safe especially for children and there are other alternatives. If I were in your shoes I would gather my research and recommend an alternative or at the very least I would insist that they revise their current procedure.

Bets of luck!

4 moms found this helpful

Discuss it with them. Here in my county in Minnesota, we are required to use a bleach solution to clean diapering surfaces. No other solution is OKed by the health department. NONE. And we have to follow the rules. Even at the diluted stage, it can leave bleach over spray spots on my clothing occasionally, but rarely. I have never, in 13 years, bleached a child's clothing.

I would guess their solution is not correct. But first you would need to know the exact rule they are required to follow. Everyone can suggest alternatives (sprays and other product), but if their RULE (this is what the daycare regulations here are called RULE 2 or RULE 3 for centers or home care), if it says they have to use bleach, then thats what they use..but normally this is a diluted amount they must mix and maintain themselves and utilize properly (wiping the changing surfaces completely before putting another child on there, etc).

Have a discussion with them...don't let it go. Not only is it ruining clothing, there could be health repercussions at a stronger concentration.

Good Luck

3 moms found this helpful

Wow! I would be VERY upset. More with the lax attitude of the daycare with not understanding the effects of chemicals not only for themselves, but on little children. If it got on his sleeves, it could have gotten on anyones hands and then in their eyes, absorbed into their skin, etc. Personally, I have all of the chemical cleaners from my house boxed up and they are currently in my garage- I am on the verge of taking them back to Walmart and requesting a refund for chemicals that are posing health threats to myself and my children. I use Sol U Guard to disinfect at my home. Non toxic and kills 99.9% of germs including the H1N1 virus. I wish all parents would educate themselves and know that we all have choices and it is our responsibility as parents to make safe choices for our children. Streamlined, chemicals from greedy corporations only interested in making money is NOT our only choice!
HUGS and I hope you find a solution you can have peace with!

B.
www.livetotalwellness.com/themillers

3 moms found this helpful

I own a childcare center and stopped using bleach just for this reason. I use a different type disinfectant and we have had no problems. Bleach is great for killing germs, however if it is bleaching his clothes they are making the solution too strong. Not all staff measure they just pour in the bleach and I am sure that is what is happening. I would suggest to the director that she leave a measuring cup for the staff to be sure they are using the right mixture so it will do the job but not ruin clothing.

2 moms found this helpful

I wouldn't like this either and I do have a more environmentally friendly alternative, but any germ killer will be strong and children should be protected accordingly. You are welcome to message me for a link.

Just the fumes from bleach can be harmful. I wouldn't over worry this one time event but yes I would voice my concerns to the school.

2 moms found this helpful

I wish more day cares and schools would use a non chemical cleaning solution! There would be a lot less colds and sick kids. Bleach is terrible to have. It's bad to breath and really bad if it touches their skin. Here at home I use products from Melaluca. It uses tea tree oil which is a natural antibacterial. I use it to clean the counters, floors, bathrooms. It's great and my kids are never sick. There are also other non chemical cleaners too, but I can't think of them right now.

2 moms found this helpful

i worked in daycare centers before and the only time we used bleach was to clean mats and things like that when the kids were asleep. we couldnt even have it out while the kids were up. But we did have to use a sanitizing spray on the mat when we changed them. some amount of clothes stains are expected, paint, glue, ice cream on special days, juice, etc. bleach should NOT be one of them. Random fact for you, the USA is one of the few countries left that still has bleach as an over the counter legal substance. in other countries it is considered a biohazard and requires the use of gloves, a mask, and protective clothing. that stuff is awful and causes a ton of health concerns. I actually have a bunch of info that i have put together on health concerns and green benefits, etc. If you want, i would be more than happy to send the info over to you to print out and take to the director. i dont know how much good it will do, because cleaning with bleach is so cheap, but its worth a shot!

2 moms found this helpful

I work at my church nursery on Sundays and we have to use Clorox anywhere spray after every diaper change. Of course it gets wiped up before the next child is on.

1 mom found this helpful

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