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The most bacterial heavy spots in the bathroom identified

- Digital Journal Staff
- Digital Journal Staff

The study was conducted by PlumbNation and Green Facilities,designed to assess the niches within the typical bathroom that are host to he highest levels of bacteria. Bathrooms are home to potentially pathogenic bacteria, including bacterial spores, and poor practice may lead to transfer between rooms, and subsequent bacteria deposition elsewhere in the house.

From the survey, rhe places which harbour the most germs are:

Door handles

Door handles are notorious for harbouring lots of bacteria due to to the fact that they are so frequently touched. To address this it is important to clean and to disinfect both sides of the door handle and not just the inside handle. The primary vector for contamination is due to too many people failing to wash their hands. Handwashing is one of the most important control measures for preventing the spread of bacteria.

Sink stopper

The sink stopper is often something people will touch before they wash their hands, meaning it will be home to a variety of organisms. Cleaning the sink stopper thoroughly helps to prevent bacteria from being transferred around.


Bathrooms are resevoirs for dust, with sources including towels, fibres from toilet paper and dead skin. In particular, skin cells will often be carrying bacteria as rafts of matter that eventually settle onto surfaces.

Light switches

Similarly to door handles, light switches are likely to be used every single time someone uses the bathroom meaning they are exposed to lots of different bacteria. This presents another cleaning target.

Bathroom exhaust fan

For those homes equipped with fans, this can be a source of dust particles and moisture. The irony is that such fans are used to reduce moisture and hence conditions to promote fungal growth, yet at the same time the moisture build up can also create an environment conducive to fungal survival.

When cleaning bathrooms it is important to use a detergent and a disinfectant, or a disinfectant with suitable surfactants. The disinfectant should be applied to all surfaces and left for the required contact time (which is invariably 5 minutes or longer). When applying, physical force is important so wiping is always better than simply spraying and leaving the chemical. If the disinfectant starts to dry, a further application must be made so that the surfaces remains wet for the duration of the contact time.

Discussng the survey findings, Jordan Chance, Product Manager from PlumbNation states in a message sent to Digital Journal: “The bathroom is the main room in the house which we use for hygiene purposes – meaning that we all need to make sure that we are thoroughly cleaning ours. There are often lots of spots we forget to clean, including the sides of the toilets, the bin, door handles, light switches and the exhaust fan.”

While the bathroom is a major target in any household cleaning regime, studies tend to find that kitchens are more heavily contaminated than the bathroom, with the toilet seat oddly being the least contaminated site.

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Written By

Dr. Tim Sandle is Digital Journal's Editor-at-Large for science news. Tim specializes in science, technology, environmental, business, and health journalism. He is additionally a practising microbiologist; and an author. He is also interested in history, politics and current affairs.

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