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Opening the refrigerator to retrieve your lunch and then using a microwave to heat it up in your office poses a serious health hazard, without you even noticing.
It is important to educate yourself about the germiest places in the office so that protective measures and cleaning practices can be implemented to safeguard the health of the employees.
You may pay a lot of attention to cleaning in their home, but the same cannot be said for your workplace.
As per the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, adults in the U.S. spend most of their waking hours at their workplace than their homes. It is your responsible to provide a clean and sanitized workplace to your employees.
A study was conducted by Kimberly-Clark in 2012, which is the most comprehensive workplace hygiene study ever. The study identified 6 germiest places in the workplace:
Unsurprisingly, the faucet handles in the bathroom sinks were found to be the dirtiest. 75% of faucet handles in 5,000 offices were found to have ATP (adenosine triphosphate) levels of more than 300, which means highly contaminated.
They are used constantly throughout the day and by almost everyone in the office. A safe practice would be to use toilet paper to cover the handles before turning them off.
Microwave door handles
The splatter and spills from food can leave bacteria in the microwave, which is why microwave door handles are second on the list. 48% of the microwave door handles were found to be highly contaminated.
They are touched again and again and may come in contact with different foods, leading to fast bacterial growth.
This may come as a surprise but keyboards are third on the list with 27% of keyboards found to have ATP levels of more than 300. In fact, a keyboard is found to have 200 times more germs than a toilet seat.
This is because keyboards have gaps and crevices which make it very easy for germs and bacteria to hide and thrive. There are more chances of a keyboard being contaminated if it is used by more than one person.
Refrigerator Door Handles
The reasons why refrigerator door handles are dirty are the same as microwaves. However, only 26% of the refrigerator door handles were found to be highly contaminated, which makes it fourth on the list.
Water fountain buttons
Being constantly under use by a lot of people in the office, the buttons of the water fountains gather a lot bacteria and microorganisms. 23% of the water fountain buttons were found to be highly contaminated.
Vending machine buttons
21% of vending machines had highly contaminated buttons; this means that just grabbing a snack from the vending machines makes you vulnerable to a lot of viruses or flu.
Other than these 6 places, a high number of germs are also found in:
- Desk Phones
- Elevator buttons
- Computer mice
- Coffee pots
It is important to be careful after touching these spots and using a hand sanitizer several times during the day.
Getting the workplace sanitized every month from a professional cleaning service is also a good idea to prevent employees getting sick.
Get in touch with Crystal Clear Enterprise Inc., a professional commercial cleaning service. They also have a restroom sanitation program which prevents office restrooms from becoming the epicenter of contamination.
We come across our fair share of bacteria, germs, allergens daily in our lives.
While bacteria are normally harmless, some may be toxic and cause serious health concerns for us. Therefore, it is important to be careful while touching something that may be contaminated.
The central point of all cross-contamination is public restrooms.
A restroom that looks clean doesn’t necessarily mean it is. There could be thousands of germs and bacteria thriving in there. If the restroom in your commercial building is not cleaned AND sanitized, then it probably means it is unsafe and poses a health concern for your employees, as well as your customers.
Researchers from the University of Colorado identified 230 different types of bacteria that are found on the floor of a public restroom alone, while another 150 type that exist on other surfaces.
Here are the certain types of bacteria that could be found in a dirty restroom:
Types of bacteria
Staphylococcus is generally known to cause “Staph Infections” by entering through the nose or throat. They can also cause infection if they are exposed to cuts or bodily injuries. Although they are generally found in homes, they can also be present in dirty restrooms. Places such as toilet, sinks and door handles are some breeding grounds for them.
E. coli is bacteria that exists in our intestinal tracts naturally. Some E. coli bacteria are toxic and dangerous. If infected, it may cause fever, abdominal pains and diarrhea. In some extreme cases, it may also cause death.
Streptococci are mainly dangerous when they collect in a large amount and cause severe throat infections, respiratory problems, fever and weakness.
Shigella is highly contagious bacteria that is most likely to be found in a public or office restroom, especially if the restroom is not properly sanitized.
An infection could lead to bloody diarrhea, stomach cramps, fever and abdominal pain. It can also cause serious problems in the regular function of the bowel.
Hepatitis A virus
Hepatitis A virus can also be found in restrooms that are used by a lot of people. Symptoms of hepatitis A virus infection include jaundice, fever, nausea, fatigue and inflammation of the liver.
Common Cold Virus
There are 200 different types of bacteria that can cause common cold, and almost all of them can be found in the restroom. The symptoms of common cold include itchy throat, running nose and constant sneezing.
What you need is a restroom sanitation program, which is provided by the Crystal Clear Enterprise Inc. Restroom sanitation will ensure that the restroom is clean and sanitized—no breeding ground for bacteria.
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