Gone are the days when people took with them newspapers and magazines to the loo to pass time while relieving themselves. These days, whether you admit it or not, you are more likely to scroll through your newsfeed on your mobile as you wait for nature's call to be over.
While it is a common practice for almost everyone, that doesn't make it harmless.
Although we do a lot of our hygiene-related activities in the bathroom, it is still a hot bed for all forms of bacteria because of the humidity and moisture in the room. According to studies done by hygiene experts in the UK, by bringing your phone inside the toilet and placing it near the sink or bowl, it can catch germs like salmonella, E. coli and C. difficile which can live for up to a week. Can you imagine exposing yourself to these for days?
Dr. Ron Cutler, Director of Biomedical Science Degrees at Queen Mary’s University London, says that if you are at all concerned about fecal contamination, you should stop doing it completely.
"Phones heat up a little bit, giving bacteria a nice warm environment. If people (happen to) handle sweets later and leave a sticky coating on the phone, that’s an even better place for bacteria," he says.
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If you really don't want to ditch the habit, the least you can do is minimize your exposure to bacteria by doing these practices:
Don't forget to wash your hands with antibacterial soap before leaving the bathroom.
Wipe down your phone with an antibacterial wipe at least once a day. You can also do the same for flush and faucet knobs.
Avoid putting the phone down on bathroom surfaces and place it in your pocket instead.