Antibacterial Fabrics are fabrics treated or infused wi […]
Antibacterial Fabrics are fabrics treated or infused with a number of different chemicals to help keep microbes such as bacteria, fungi and viruses from flourishing on its surface. These materials are often a great option for many applications, including healthcare, sports, and outdoor environments.
Textiles are a very important part of our lives. However, they are also a very good habitat for bacteria, fungi and dust mites that can lead to odors in intimate and athletic clothing, create stains on furniture, proliferate in medical environments, cause allergic reactions, and even affect the overall look of an item.
Because of this, manufacturers have developed an extensive range of products that contain antimicrobial ingredients. These are not only designed to help prevent bacterial growth, but they can also be a great way to improve the durability of fabric, which will help extend the lifespan of a product.
Typical treatments for antimicrobial fabrics include zinc pyrithione, silver, polyhexamethylene biguanide (PHMB), and silane quaternary ammonia compounds (Silane quats). These substances are highly effective at low concentrations and have excellent wash durability.
Some of these additives are able to target bacteria, fungi and viruses all at once. This is a particularly important feature for some of these fabrics, such as hospital curtains, that may be used by patients and staff.
The ability to control the spread of germs and bacteria on a fabric can be especially useful in hospitals or any other environment that is prone to infection. In addition, these fabrics can reduce the overall cost of cleaning and replacement of items that are contaminated.
Most of the chemicals used to treat antimicrobial fabrics are biocidal agents that can kill bacteria, fungi and viruses without killing their hosts. These chemicals are commonly incorporated into polymers during the manufacturing process or blended into synthetic fibers before the final product is extruded.
These materials can be applied on various textile substrates using exhaust, pad-dry-cure, spraying and foaming methods. The type of finish chosen depends on the type of fabric and the requirements of the end user.
The antimicrobial properties of a fabric can be assessed by calculating percentage reduction in colony forming units of bacteria (CFU). This is done using AATCC test method 100:2004. Depending on the requirements, a wide variety of finishes are available to meet these needs.
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