Your bathroom gets a lot of traffic throughout the day. With this traffic comes the introduction of germs and bacteria, particularly around your toilet. When you flush your toilet, especially with the lid up, the bacteria spreads throughout your bathroom, and it begins to replicate on various surfaces. This is why it's important to clean your toilet and bathroom frequently.
Bacteria in Your Bathroom
A test done by several students at Miami University in Ohio found that five main types of bacteria exist in your bathroom. The first type is Staphylococci. Staphylococci are spherical bacteria found in clusters. These bacteria cause problems in the digestive tract, urinary tract infections and toxic shock syndrome in women. The second type of bacteria is Streptococci, which are also spherical but tend to grow in chains. Streptococci cause sore throat infections that are spread through contact with infected or healthy carriers. E. coli is found in bathrooms as well. E. Coli are spherical cells that cause diarrhea. Salmonella is also found in the bathroom. This bacteria is rod-shaped. Salmonella is found in human and animal feces due to contaminated food or water. It causes headaches, nausea and vomiting. They also found Campylobactor. Campylobactor are rod-shaped cells found in human and animal intestines, and that cause diarrhea.
Flushing Your Toilet
Many people believe that flushing your toilet with the lid closed prevents bacteria from spraying and contacting various surfaces in your bathroom. Unfortunately, closing your toilet's lid does not significantly reduce the amount of bacteria released into the air after flushing. Bacteria seeps out of the space between the lid and the seat. Bacteria was found on surfaces as far as 32 inches away from the toilet after flushing, according to Dr. Kelly Reynolds of The University of Arizona.
Preventing Germs From Spreading
To prevent sickness caused by bacteria found on your toilet, keep things such as tooth brushes, contact lenses and hand towels at least three feet from your toilet or enclosed in a cabinet. By not properly storing these items, bacteria will come in contact with them when you flush your toilet. When you go to use them, the bacteria will spread to your body and can eventually cause infection or illness. Also replace towels every few days, and bleach handles and doorknobs on a weekly basis.
Cleaning Your Toilet
Prevent the spread and growth of bacteria by cleaning your toilet and surrounding surfaces properly and frequently. Clean all surfaces with bleach and hot water, and then wipe dry. Clean under the seat and rim of your toilet, where bacteria easily hide and replicate. If guests use your bathroom, clean it after they leave.
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