Have you ever been in the middle of crocheting or knitting a chemo cap and it dawns on you that you may have forgot to wash your hands? It happened to me the other day. I was on the plane flying back to Georgia and the flight attendant handed me a little bag of peanuts.

My bag of lightly salted peanuts (thank you Southwest), Diet Coke and my almost finished chemo cap.

I ate them and about 20 minutes later began to finish a chemo cap I had started earlier in the flight. All of a sudden the thought hit me… I didn’t wash my hands!!! I thought “oh no, someone could have a serious reaction to the peanut oil and dust on my hands if I donate this cap.” I realized at that moment how important it is that I make a conscious effort to remember to wash my hands before I pick up my hook and begin crocheting.

People that have a lower immune system due to cancer related treatments can not afford to be exposed to any type of germs or items that could cause an allergic reaction. Be careful when you make your caps to keep them away from any type of food, dust, pet dander, smoke, etc. Another good idea is to always wash your hands before crocheting/knitting. Even if you think they are clean, it doesn’t hurt to take an extra 30 seconds and be sure before picking up your hook or needles. In my case I had a little bottle of hand sanitizer that I should have used. Also, it’s a good idea to clean your hooks and needles every so often. Just rub a little hand sanitizer (unscented) on them and let them dry before using.

Let’s say you accidentally ate a handful of peanuts while you were crocheting like I did. Don’t worry you don’t have to throw out the item. You can continue to make the item and then wash it. However, you need to use an “allergen free” “unscented” or “clear” liquid detergent. Detergents that are meant for babies may be mild enough but are usually more expensive. Stay away from common perfumed detergents. They can aggravate a sensitive scalp.

Remember wash your hands and happy hooking.