5 Ways To Maintain Toilet Hygiene
Toilets require high maintenance. They can get notoriously dirty due to environmental contamination. Here are 5 ways to maintain toilet hygiene and minimize risks of cross-contamination.
1. Shut the lid before flushing
Researchers found that with each flush, germs can be released up to 10 inches above toilet seats. These are the same germs that transmit infectious diseases. Not only that, these harmful microbes can land on toilet surfaces when they are dispersed.
Closing the lid before flushing can definitely curb the spread of some aerosolized microbes that would otherwise be sprinkled throughout the toilet. One study found that closing the lid before flushing resulted in bacterial contamination that was 12 times lower than leaving it open.
Of course, the toilet lid isn’t airtight, however, it will significantly reduce the spread of pathogens since it will keep many larger particles contained. By minimizing the exposure to the pathogens, you will minimize the risk of getting sick.
When you touch these surfaces, the germs will be transferred to your hands. Thereafter, touching your face or food with contaminated hands can potentially make you very sick! Remember to wash your hands with soap and water afterward. After all, there are germs in and around the sides of the toilet lid!
If you think a flushed toilet is clean, there is bad news for you. Over 1 million bacteria stay alive after a toilet is flushed!
2. Keep toilet seats clean
Some parts of the toilet seat, especially the underside, are often victims of consistent urination and defecating. Over time, they will build up stains that are full of bacterias which may cause serious infections. Furthermore, it will defy the use of ordinary detergents and water, becoming extremely difficult to remove.
It goes the same with the top side of the seat as you may have seen the toilet signs reminding users not to squat on the toilet seats. It may be gross but it happens! Shoes are a hotbed of dangerous bacteria. Research suggests that over 96% of shoes contain fecal bacteria.
Also, stained toilet seats are an eyesore that you may find hard to ignore with time. This might prompt you to replace the seat without any cracks on it. A better way to deal with unclean toilet seats is to use a toilet seat cleaner and need to frequently wash the seats.
3. Wash hands thoroughly with soap and water before stepping out
Hand washing is the single most effective way to prevent the spread of infections. You can spread certain “germs” (a general term for pathogens like viruses and bacteria) casually by touching another person, not to mention once you are done using the toilet. Let me give you some examples.
Do you ever count the number of times you touch a surface each time you visit a toilet? You catch germs when you touch contaminated surfaces or objects such as the door handle, the toilet seat lid, and the flush button. When you step out of the toilet without washing your hands with soap and water, germs you caught on your hands can be transmitted to others who are in close contact with you. In addition, when you touch your face, germs can enter your body.
According to the Centre by the Ministry of Health (MOH), handwashing with soap and water reduces the number of people who get sick with diarrhea by 30%. Therefore, do not skip the soap and water even when you are in a hurry!
4. Dry hands before stepping out
Research suggests that damp hands spread 1,000 times more germs than dry hands because a moist surface provides a more conducive environment for bacteria to thrive in.
The quick initial reaction after performing the required washroom needs is to wash your hands in a hurry and rush out while flicking excess water to the floor after all moisture can be vaporized in an air-conditioned workspace.
Avoid bad washroom habits by wiping the wet hands after washing against ourselves. It is really convenient, quick, and easy to wipe the wet hands on our attire; however, this washroom mistake could deliver more consequences and implications since the clothes are actually filled with germs and bacteria as we spend our day and come into contact with various contaminants.
It's best if you could always spend a few seconds utilizing the paper towel or hand dryer to keep your hands dry and why not use a hand sanitizer after exiting the washroom to heighten your hygiene standards.
5. Keep the floor dry
Floors are one of the top places in washroom facilities for bacterial harborage. A wet floor poses multiple hazards. Besides posing a risk for falls, a damp floor provides an ideal environment for disease-causing bacteria to thrive.
As is well known, bacteria function best in a moist environment. This condition will get worse if the drainage and ventilation are poor so that the air becomes unhealthy. This is a sign of neglect when it comes to bathroom hygiene which can be avoided by keeping the bathroom floor dry with the right cleaning products and equipment.