How Can I Prevent Giving Hepatitis C?
The spread of Hepatitis C within a household is so low as to be near zero. In fact, everyday contact is not risky. However, if you have Hepatitis C follow these common precautions to prevent spreading or giving it to others:
- Cover any cuts or blisters to prevent others from coming in contact with your blood.
- Carefully dispose of any used bandages, tissues, tampons, sanitary napkins or anything else with your blood on it.
- Wash your hands, and any object that has come in contact with your blood, thoroughly with soap and water.
- Clean spilled blood from surfaces – including dried blood – using household bleach (like Clorox) and water. Make a cleaning solution of one part bleach to ten parts water. To do this, you can fill a bucket with 1 half-cup of bleach and 10 half-cups of water (which is the same as 5 whole cups of water).
- Don’t share personal items like your razor, nail clippers, toothbrush, or anything else that might have blood on it.
- Do not continue to breastfeed your baby if your nipples become cracked and bleed. You can resume breastfeeding when your nipples are healed, since Hepatitis C in not spread through breast milk.
- Don’t donate blood, organs or sperm.
- If you’re injecting street drugs, try to get into a treatment program. If you continue to use drugs, don’t share needles or other equipment with anyone else.
While the odds of passing on Hepatitis C are not high, it’s best if you tell anyone at risk that you have Hepatitis C. We understand that it may be hard to discuss your infection with others, but doing so gives them an opportunity to get tested and treated if need be.
This page has been reviewed September 2015.