On a daily basis, we are exposed to germs such as bacteria, viruses, fungi, etc which can be easily found on items we use every day. Studies around the world have shown the presence of germs around us and how they can cause diseases.
If scientists claim that germs are everywhere around us, then hotels are no exception. A Scientific American blog highlighted the most germ-ladened objects that you should avoid or, better yet, clean thoroughly to avoid contracting any diseases.
Here's a list of seven dirty objects in hotels that carry more germs than a toilet itself. Let's dive into the details as we will also highlight how you can protect yourself and help remedy the situation now that you are staying in a room. Here they are:
- Elevator buttons
- Door handles
- Bathroom furniture
- TV remote control
- Desk or table
- Light switches
According to a study by the Upgraded Points, they found elevator buttons to be among the dirtiest objects in a hotel. Elevator buttons are so prone to germs that it was discovered it has 1,477 more germs than a door handle or doorknob of a home bathroom and 737 more germs than the seat of a domestic toilet.
According to the study, another object you should be wary of while enjoying your stay in a hotel is the door handle. Door handles and knobs in a hotel have a whopping 1,839 more germs than a house doorknob, and 918 more germs than the seat of a home toilet.
The bathroom counter or cabinet are some of the other objects with the most germs. According to a study by the Travelmath, hotel bathroom furniture had more than 1,288,817 colony-forming units (CFU) of bacteria
The TV remote control is one of the objects that usually goes unnoticed by cleaning staff in hotel rooms. Unfortunately, it is a device that accumulates germs on a large scale. The above study by Travelmath indicates that an average hotel TV remote has 1,211,687 CFU.
The seemingly harmless desk in the room is another place that contains several germs. The Travelmath study revealed about 604,907 CFU found on desk surfaces.
Another object most frequently pointed out as a germ depository and to which we seldom pay attention is the telephone in a hotel. According to the aforementioned comparison, it has 4,252 CFU.
Another object which usually goes unnoticed by the cleaning staff is the light switch. The fact that it's easily forgotten to be cleaned by hotel staff makes it a playground for germs. It is therefore not surprising that the American Society for Microbiology considers them to be among the dirtiest objects in a hotel.
What should you do to protect yourself?
Don't worry, don't panic! Experts recommend taking necessary hygienic measures which include putting your hands away from your face after touching any of these dirty objects in a hotel.
Other measures are:
- Washing your hands to get rid of any germs that may have stuck on your hands after you touched these objects.
- Using sanitizing wipes to clean these surfaces
- In the specific case of the remote control, in addition to cleaning it with a wipe, also take extra measures to protect your hands from viruses and bacteria.