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You can't. But you can minimize bacteria by simply boiling the sounds in plain water for about 20 minutes before using them. Everything that comes into contact with the sound should be thoroughly cleaned with warm/hot water and antibacterial soap. Your hands are the dirtiest. So scrub your nails with a plastic brush and antibacterial soap. Wearing latex gloves is recommended. After the sounds are boiled, place them on a clean, freshly laundered towel and wrap them until ready for use. Removing the sounds from the boiling water should be done with tongs that have also been boiled in the same water. Going to the trouble of boiling your sounds and then retreiving them from the water with a crusty old fork that you scraped off the bottom of your dirty kitchen sink kinda defeats the purpose.

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Q: How can you keep sounding rods sterile?
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