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Biofilm: What is it and how do we remove it?

Sick of having to use bleach and ammonia-based products to kill germs?  There a reason these dangerous chemicals have to include “poison control” instructions on their labels. They might sterilize or kill living matter, but then you’re left with a poisonous chemical on your kitchen counters and bathrooms.  We obviously know not to ingest bleach or ammonia, but did you know they shouldn’t come in contact with your skin either?  Even if you use rubber gloves, the residue remains on your surface. Inhaling fumes from bleach or ammonia-based products is also toxic.  Cleaning products like bleach produce airborne compounds that irritate the lining of the respiratory tract. Many respiratory infections and asthma have been linked to inhaling chemicals in the home.  

So, you’re worried about using chemicals in your home, but then you’re also worried about killing germs and keeping viruses out of your house.  Is there a way to remove germs without the dangerous chemicals?  Well, there may not be a point in using chemicals anymore.

 

Magnification of a biofilm surface

New disinfectant-resistant pathogens emerge every year and have led to a government initiative to improve home and hospital hygiene. These new pathogens are superbug strains, such as Candida auris, and are resistant to multiple antibiotics if they are in your bloodstream, and  resistant to chemicals and disinfectants if they are living on a surface.  Many fungi and viruses have found a way to survive what we typically use to clean.  After decades of using chemicals to clean, it is clear we now need a different approach.

The way that many of these superbug strains survive our chemicals is by forming biofilm.  According to a recent public statement from the National Institutes of Health, more than 65% of all microbial infections are caused by biofilms.  This includes common infections such as urinary tract infections, child middle-ear infections, gingivitis, and more!  Biofilm is a protective coating that forms on top of harmful bacteria. Germs can now build a barrier that protect them from disinfectants and can survive our strongest chemicals.  When submerged under full-strength bleach for 20 minutes, biofilms still survive!

The National Institute of Health  published a study done in 2012 of various already-cleaned items inside a hospital – patient bedding, bathroom counters, door handles, etc.  93% of the findings still had bacteria living there due to the protection of biofilm.  Hospitals call these organisms MRO’s, or multi-resistant organisms – meaning, resistant to disinfectants and resistant to antibiotics. In the Journal of Hospital Infections, (wait…there’s a reputable journal with that title?) they cited the 2012 study and said, “Biofilm containing MROs persist on clinical surfaces from an ICU despite terminal cleaning, suggesting that current cleaning practices are inadequate to control biofilm development.” We need a non-toxic way to remove bacteria AND biofilm from our surfaces.  

MojaFiber Heavy Duty / Multi-Purpose Combo Pack

How do you tell if you have biofilm in your home?  Check the most obvious places – at the bottom of your pet’s water bowl, inside the toilet bowl, kitchen sink, and drains.  If you try to pour chemicals on it, or use a typical cleaning cloth, the stain or the residue will remain.  In rooms with a lot of moisture like bathrooms or kitchen, the biofilm will often take on a pinkish color and it will look shiny or feel slippery. The best way to prevent biofilm is to clean regularly with a cloth that will actually remove the bacteria from your surfaces before it can form the biofilm.

In an article from Clinical Microbiology Review entitled, “Controlling Hospital-Acquired Infection”, it discusses ultra-microfiber as a cleaning method for multi-resistant organisms.  “Ultra-microfiber (UMF) cloths are made of a combination of polyamide and polyester, which absorb particles of soil through static attraction. Dust and organisms become firmly attached to the synthetic fibers and tend to persist within the cloth throughout the cleaning process. A range of different types of damp microfiber cloths were recently evaluated for their ability to remove pathogens, including C. difficile spores, MRSA, and E. coli. These [UMF] cloths generally eradicated most, if not all, cultivable bacteria or C. difficile spores from the surfaces tested, while standard cloths did not.”

MojaFiber is the most effective ultra-microfiber you will find.  A MojaFiber cloth is split microfiber, meaning the fibers are 1/200th the width of a human hair. This makes MojaFiber far more absorbent than a typical microfiber cloth.  The more absorbent your microfiber cloth, the more microbes you remove from your surfaces, including hard-to-kill spores and MRO’s.  Because MojaFiber cloths are positively charged, they will attract negatively charged dirt and grease. The positive charge combined with the special weave make it possible for you to clean without chemicals.  Mojafiber removes 99% of all bacteria using only water!  Check out our YouTube video to see the results!  

You can launder your MojaFiber cloths just like you would a cotton cloth.  MojaFiber lasts longer than cotton; it can be washed a thousand times before losing its effectiveness.  Do not use any kind of fabric softener or bleach – this will inhibit the bacteria-removing potential of your MojaFibers.  

In summary, cotton cloths and chemical sprays do nothing to disturb the biofilm matrix or remove superbug germs from a surface. An ultra-microfiber cloth with some good old-fashioned elbow-grease is the only proven way to remove both chemical-resistant bacteria and biofilm. If you see a slight color forming on your surfaces, you may need a cloth with even more power to kick through the biofilm. Check out the Heavy Duty MojaFiber cloth!  Disturb the outside surface of the biofilm with the scrubbing side and completely remove the bacteria underneath with the MojaFiber side. MojaFiber cloths are your chemical-free answer to remove unwanted germs from your home and office!  

 

Jonathan Reid

Author Jonathan Reid

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