The Most Shocking Germy Public Places.

By: Bel Marra Health | Immune System | Thursday, March 08, 2012 - 05:00 AM

cold and fluGerms are all around you and if you want to have a healthy immune system that is able to fight off infections such as the cold and flu, you should avoid many germy public places. When you’re in the comfort of your own home you’re able to keep germs at bay. Utilizing preventative measures you can ensure your home is clean and free of germs that can wreak havoc on your immune system. Below some of the most germy public places are exposed. Preventative steps to avoid exposure to these places will also be looked at.

Germs are all around you and if you want to have a healthy immune system that is able to fight off infections such as the cold and flu, you should avoid many germy public places. When you’re in the comfort of your own home you’re able to keep germs at bay. Utilizing preventative measures you can ensure your home is clean and free of germs that can wreak havoc on your immune system. Below some of the most germy public places are exposed. Preventative steps to avoid exposure to these places will also be looked at.

Restaurant Menus

When you go to a restaurant and the waiter hands you a menu, you probably don’t even think twice, but you should. When was the last time that you saw a menu being disinfected? Cold and flu bugs can live on hard surfaces for up to 18 hours. Busy restaurants serve hundreds of customers per day. Chances are that some of their customers are suffering from the cold and flu and now they’re passing their germs (unknowingly) on to you. The catch – you need to look at the menu in order to place your order. So, the best thing to do is to wash your hands immediately after you place your order and hand the menu back to your server. Also as an added preventative measure, be sure that the menu doesn’t touch your napkin or utensils.

The Lemon Wedge on your drink…

You order a glass or water or a fancy drink and it comes to the table with a lemon or lime wedge. While this may look pretty, the fruit slices are more than likely harboring a number of germs, including those that cause the cold and flu. As a preventative measure, ask your server for your drink minus the fancy fruit decorations.

Condiment Containers…and salt and pepper shakers

Just like the menus, the condiment containers found in restaurants are sure to be full of cold and flu germs from previous customers. As a preventative step, before you grab hold of the container, wipe it down with a disinfectant wipe or use hand sanitizer after using it. Don’t hold a napkin to use the container because napkins are porous and allow the germs to pass through.

Public Hand Soap Dispensers

About 25% of all public soap dispensers have some level of fecal bacteria on them. When you’re in a public restroom, make sure you use hot water and scrub your hands for 15-20 seconds. Use a paper towel to dry your hands and as a preventative measure, use the same paper towel to turn the tap off to avoid contact with contaminated tap handles.

Restroom Door Handles

You may like to believe that everyone who uses the restroom is just as cautious as you are when it comes to washing your hands, but in truth, not everyone is. The restroom door handles can be loaded with germs that will negatively affect your immune system. Use a paper towel to open the door after using the rest room as a preventative step to keep the cold and flu away.

Grocery Cart Handles

Grocery cart handles are contaminated with fecal bacteria as well as germs that cause the cold and flu. As a preventative precaution, many grocery stores now provide disinfectant wipes in the same area where you pick your cart up. Grab a wipe and clean off the handle of the cart before you start your grocery shopping.

ATM Machines

The buttons on ATM machines are yet another culprit for germs. As a way to help your immune system, use disinfectant liquid after using these machines.

Gas Pump Handles

You’ve probably never seen a gas station attendant cleaning the pump handles and every day numerous people are touching the pump handles. As a precaution, use hand sanitizer after filling up. Or, if you’re lucky enough to be close to a full-serve station, opt for that. It may cost a few cents more, but your immune system will thank you.

Escalator Railings and Elevator Buttons

You need to go “up” or “down” whether you’re at the mall, at a hotel or in an apartment building. These surfaces are rarely cleaned and harbor all sorts of germs. Avoid touching the escalator handrails and if you have to press the elevator buttons, use your elbow instead of your hand. Or, even better – use the stairs!

It’s virtually impossible to avoid germs all together, and not all germs are necessarily bad for you. However, the areas mentioned above encompass areas with an abundance of harmful germs which will make your immune system unhappy. Being aware of your surroundings and using preventative steps to ensure you avoid harmful germs will help you to stay healthy.


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