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Chlorhexidine Bathing

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 6, 2024.

What is chlorhexidine bathing?

Chlorhexidine bathing is done to prevent an infection. Chlorhexidine is a medicine that can kill bacteria, fungi, viruses, and other organisms. Chlorhexidine comes as a liquid or as cloths. The kind you use will depend on why you need chlorhexidine. You may need to bathe or shower with the liquid every day to prevent infection during a hospital stay. You may need to use it the night before or the day of surgery. You will be given specific instructions if you need to do chlorhexidine bathing at home before surgery.

Why may I need chlorhexidine bathing?

How is chlorhexidine bathing done?

Your healthcare provider will tell you when to do chlorhexidine bathing. Only use chlorhexidine on the skin below your neck, not on your face. Always put clean clothes on after you bathe, shower, or use the cloths. This will help prevent germs on used clothing from getting onto your skin. If you are having surgery, it is important to keep the area clean after you use chlorhexidine. Tell a healthcare provider if you need help keeping the area clean.

What else do I need to know about chlorhexidine bathing?

When should I contact my healthcare provider?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.