Grime weekly: Some interesting facts about germs, bacteria and hygiene....

  • The average kitchen sink contains 100,000 times more germs than the bathroom.
  • Studies by Gerba indicate that kitchen sponges are the most contaminated object in the home and can harbor billions of bacteria! Make sure you change yours regularly to avoid infection. Tip - Keep sponges out of the sink when not in use so they get a chance to dry. Drying kills a lot of germs.
  • Recent research has found that 50% of TV remote controls tested positive for cold viruses. A regular wipe with an antibacterial agent will eliminate these and other viruses and bacteria.
  • Dust mites love beds! An average person sheds 14 million dead skin cells per night. Mites and their faeces are a common cause of asthma and allergies so change bedding at least once a week and wash on a hot cycle.
  • Put the lid down before flushing the toilet:- Studies show that bacteria is sprayed up to 25cm above the rim when you flush with it up. You may want to move your toothbrush a little further away too!!
  • A study of high chairs in 30 restaurants revealed they harbour, on average,  more bacteria than a toilet seat. 147 per vs 8 per
  • Up to 1 in 8 computer keyboards could be regarded a "health hazard". They are often a reflection of what's in your nose and gut. Dust and food crumbs can be shaken or vacuumed out, then keys disinfected with alcohol wipes.
  • Research by QM UOL and LSHTM shows faecal bacteria are present on 26% of hands, 14% of banknotes and 10% of credit cards.
  • Research found that 50% of vacuum cleaner brushes contained faecal bacteria and 13% E.coli. Spray with disinfectant after use.
  • Fridge salad drawers often contain many times the level of bacteria considered safe, including E.coli, salmonella and listeria, ensure you empty and wipe out regularly.
  • Don't forget to clean in your garden! Studies reveal many barbecues, garden tables and wheelie bin lids often harbour more germs than a toilet seat.
  • The only reason you should need to remove your shoes at the door! A study has revealed the common occurrence (96%) of coli form and (27%) E. coli bacteria on the outside of shoes. This indicates frequent contact with faecal material, which most likely originates from floors in public toilets or contact with animal faeces outdoors. The research also found that bacteria can be tracked by shoes over a long distance into your home or personal space after the shoes were contaminated.
  • Towels absorb more than just water! Dead skin cells and moisture provide a perfect breeding ground for bacteria. Change your towels a minimum of once a week and wash them at 90C.
  • A study found that some touchscreen devices (iPads, tablets and mobile phones) had 18 times more bacteria than a public toilet flush handle. Manufacturers recommend only cleaning with a soft dry cloth but we clean ours using iKlear with no ill effect to the oleophobic screen.
  • We clean the surfaces of our kitchens and bathrooms regularly but how often do we clean the wall tiles? Our experience has found that many people rarely think to wipe down and buff the walls in these rooms too! Not only does this restore the tiles lustre, it also removes grime, dust, soap residue and bacteria.
  • Most women's handbags harbour tens of thousands of bacteria on the bottom including staphylococcus, salmonella and E.coli. Hook them up wherever possible, especially in public toilets and never place them on your kitchen work surfaces!
  • Your reusable shopping bags are green, but are they clean? The fabric or materials used in them can be contaminated with bacteria such as salmonella and E.coli from food or other items. These germs could then cross contaminate other food or items we carry in the bag. Cloth bags should be washed and plastic lined ones wiped out with hot soapy water. Ensure they are thoroughly dried before being stored.
  • According to the United Nations "Washing hands is the most cost-effective intervention for the worldwide control of disease.
  • House dust composition varies, but in general you might find textile fibers, decomposing insect parts, animal and human hair, food leftovers, pollen grains, mold spores, bacteria, skin flakes, insulation, sand, and the most likely offender, the dust mite and its faecal material.
  • A recent survey found that many surfaces in and around built-in water dispensers in fridge doors harbour concerning levels of bacteria. Clean regularly in accordance with your manufacturers instructions.
  • Hand dryers may be more eco-friendly but they may not be as hygienic. Studies have shown that paper towels are more hygienic than hand dryers, which actually blow bacteria over your hands, as well as the entire bathroom. Plus the friction created by actively wiping your hands with towels helps scrub off unwanted bacteria.

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