INFECTIOUS DISEASES AND PUBLIC TOILET

Diseases you can get from using a public toilet

So, this topic is pretty much essential as long as people go to public places and find themselves having to go to the loo.

For most of us, if you spend so much time thinking about all the cons of using a public toilet, you probably wouldn’t the next time you’re out.

If you squirm at the thought of creepy germs lurking on toilet seats or you take a closer look at handles or taps or knobs in public restrooms, you’d spend less time than you usually do, taking pictures, sitting by the top of a sink to take that perfect picture, not to mention malls and a lot of commonly crowded places

One could get streptococcus, staphylococcus, E. coli and shigella bacteria, hepatitis A virus, the common cold virus, and various sexually transmitted organisms from public restrooms. But if your immune system is healthy, and if you adopt simple hygienic measures like handwashing, you should be fine, but still keep your hygienic practices on a 100.

Many people consider toilet seats to be a playground for organisms responsible for STDs like chlamydia or gonorrhea, but the toilet seat IS NOT the common vehicle for transmitting infections to humans. For an infection to occur, the germs would have to be transferred from the toilet seat to your urethral or genital tract, which occurs most times, or through a cut or sore on the buttocks or thighs, which is possible but very unlikely.

Common cold germs, like most viruses, die rapidly, and thus may be less of a threat than you think.

Germs in faeces can be propelled into the air when the toilet is flushed. For that reason, it’s advisable to move step back a little immediately after flushing to keep the microscopic, airborne mist from choosing you as a landing site.

Other things to take note of in restrooms are sinks, handles and towel dispensers. Picture someone emerging from a bathroom stall, and turning on the tap with dirty hands, and you’ll know why taps are a potentially troublesome surface. Sinks are a big reservoir of germ colonies in restrooms, thanks in part to accumulations of water that become breeding grounds for tiny organisms.

WASHING YOUR HANDS is very important. Though 95% of men and women claim that they wash after using a public toilet, observations made by researchers discovered that only 67% actually do.

Even if you’re a frequent visitor to public restrooms, you can coexist peacefully and even healthfully with the germs around you. In addition to handwashing, try these strategies:

  • Rather than flushing the toilet with your bare hand, use your shoe. If you can’t do that, protect your hands by using a cloth to do that. Everyone else is probably doing it.
  • After washing your hands, use a paper towel to shut off the tap and to open the door on your way out, to protect them from becoming contaminated.
  • Whenever possible, use a restroom stall with toilet paper that is almost completely covered in a metal or plastic holder, which will guard against splattering water and germs.
  • Use hot-air hand dryers with care. In order to feel the hot air, you might have to get very close to the vents. Don’t let your hands touch the surface of the vents, however, or you’ll risk contamination.

Prevention is better than Cure! Keep up with your hygienic practices and be cautious when using public restrooms.

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