September 11, 2013 11:58 PM
Everyone should wash their hands after using the restroom, right? However, a team of scientists says the hygienic practice may not be as clean as thought – that’s because the hand soap in 25 percent of public restrooms may could be dirty – even more contaminated than toilet water.
The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports that microbiologists at GOJO Industries say that contaminated soap oftentimes contains so much fecal matter that it leaves your hands dirtier than before you washed them. GOJO says there could be so much bacteria in the soap that coming in contact with it could lead to vomiting, fever, diarrhea or pink eye.
"It was disgusting," University of Arizona professor Charles P. Gerba said of the GOJO study, which was published in the Journal of Environmental Health. "We didn't find any new life forms, but we found plenty of coliform bacteria. I never dreamed there could be so many bacteria in soap."...
Their study ... said the bacteria is formed from airborne contaminents that come in contact with the soap when containers are refilled ...
Based on the results from the study GOJO microbiology scientist Dave Shumaker said an individual could leave a restroom with 25 times more bacteria on their hands than before they first walked in.
Even more disturbing, the study found that attempting to clean the soap dispensers, even when using bleach, made little to no difference over time. "Within two weeks, the soap inside the dispenser was just as contaminated as before the cleaning," Shumaker said.
"You could end up going into a public restroom and coming out dirtier than you were before," he told the Plain Dealer.
Read full article at Restroom soap may be dirtier than toilet water