Friday, March 22

Poop On Your Cell Phones

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By now most of you have heard the facts about flushing the toilet without shutting it and the waste that gets spewed all over your bathroom stuff in there but what about something we carry in our hot little hands all day and take everywhere? Our cell phones.

You know you take it everyplace you go. There was a good article recently that said with all of the choices that we have at home to get online or do searches with that cell phones are at the top of the list. Not home computers or tablets, cell phones. I hear a lot of people complain about trying to read the small screens and use the tiny keyboards but it’s becoming a well known fact that we use our phones more than any other device, especially at home.

When you consider those facts it may not be a surprise to you that our cell phones could be harvesting E. coli and infectious diseases from bathrooms, dirty hands and who knows what else.

You hold it up to your face, use it while relieving yourself, take it into public bathrooms, play with it while eating, take it to hospitals, your car and handle it all day. You may wash your hands but after that you pick that dirty cell phone right back up again.

NED University Journal of Research did a study in 2012 and published a paper on this subject. Here is what they found.

Mobile Phones: Reservoir Of Infectious Diseases In University Premises

The objective of this study is to find out the level of contamination of mobile phones used in University premises. These mobile phones could be a reservoir of pathogenic microorganisms and can also contribute in spread of infectious diseases among the users in different environments. During this study, 367 mobile phones of teachers, students, non-teaching staff, medical staff and canteen staff of the University were screened in order to check the presence of different microorganisms including normal flora and pathogenic species. Isolated bacterial species were identified by the standard microbiological methods and biochemical tests. Eight different commonly used disinfectants were tested by Agar Well Diffusion method to find out the effective disinfectant for the cleaning of mobile phones. 98.6% of the total mobile phones were contaminated with bacteria. Overall, 250 (69.0%) samples were contaminated with different members of coliforms group of bacteria. 5% Acetic acid solution and Dettol (4.8% Chloroxylenol) were found to be active disinfectants against bacterial isolates. Presence of coliforms and other pathogens on mobile phones indicates the potential unhygienic conditions in university staff and students. Incidences of infectious diseases are greater in those people who use mobile phones for more than two hours per day. This is an alarming situation which can result in outbreak of diseases in university premises.

Or at work, or in the home, it’s no wonder people get sick so often. I never gave this much thought myself until I was watching Anderson Cooper on TV and he discussed it. It makes sense even if you never considered it until now.

When asked if they wash their hands 95% of people said they did it regularly but obviously they aren’t telling the whole truth. Men’s hands were more contaminated then women and men wash their hands less when exiting restrooms. I don’t think I have to point out that people with dirty hands have the most “poop” on their phones.

If you stop to think about every place scientists have ever turned up fecal bacteria-grocery store carts, swimming pools, fast food restaurant soda fountains and kids’ play areas, ATM keypads, your purse, your washing machine, prewashed salad greens, food court trays, and pretty much everything in a hotel room, it makes it hard to lay your hands on anything again.

You know what to do about this because (if we ever learn to develop it,) it’s just common sense. Wash your hands, disinfect your cell phone with wipes, don’t share your phone especially with sick people, and keep your phone away from the bathroom.

A little cleanliness never hurt anyone, even when dealing with technology.

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