Do You Wash Your Hands Immediately After Touching These 10 Things?


Washing hands is very essential. We often neglect the dangers of everyday germs and forget how important handwashing is, after getting in contact with everyday items.


1. Money

Online shopping has replaced much of the in-store sales. Debit cards and credit cards are usually in use for purchases, but sometimes you just need to carry cash. When you do, be sure to wash your hands as soon as you are done with the transactions involving cash. Researchers tested $1 bills from a New York City bank and found hundreds of microorganisms, including oral and vaginal bacteria, and DNA from pets and viruses. Now that is something to worry about!

2. Handrails and doorknobs

Katy Burris, MD, a dermatologist at Columbia University Medical Center, says hand washing is incredibly important to limit the spread of bacteria and viruses. After using public transportation, it is extremely important to keep handwashing in mind, because there is continuous contact with different surfaces that are loaded with germs and bacteria. This includes everything from handrails on an escalator to poles on the subway to bathroom door handles.

3. Restaurant menus

Restaurants menus carry some amazing food items and great amount of germs. Researchers from the University of Arizona found that menus had 185,000 bacterial organisms. There is no way to skip the menus, but hand washing can prevent the hands from getting infected from many germs on the menu!

4. Almost anything in a doctor’s office

With hundreds of patients walking in and out of the hospitals and clinics carrying germs along, it is nearly impossible to avoid the contact with germs at the doctor’s office. In fact, there are around 46,000 more germs on that pen at a doctor’s office than on an average toilet seat. Better wash your hands after getting in contact with surfaces of chairs, tables, pens, prescriptions and as much as you can think of at the doctor’s office.

5. Any animals

Having pet animals is always fun. Not everyone realizes that it washing hands is necessary after touching pets or animals. According to Nesochi Okeke-Igbokwe, MD, a physician and health expert. “Animals may carry various diseases,” she says. “And because pets are generally thought of as family friendly, hand washing is sometimes overlooked.” For the safety of your pets and you, hand washing is important.

6. Touchscreens

Since technology has taken over, use of papers has become limited. Touchscreens carry more germs than apps! It’s key to wash your hands after touching any screens. One of the worst offenders are kiosk machines in airports or public transportation locations, Dr. Burris says. “Germs are everywhere, and some places may harbor more than you may realize,” she says. Cell phones count, too; especially as we may share them with others, and at some point, we do share cell phones.

7. Cutting boards and kitchen sponges

The kitchen can be a great place to be, even for the germs and bacteria. Bringing in food item from the grocery store also brings in many germs to the kitchen. One study found as many as 326 different species of bacteria living on used kitchen sponges. Make sure to toss out the old ones and, as Dr. Burris suggests, always wash your hands before preparing a meal and after handling raw meats. Basically, just wash your hands every now and then in the kitchen.

8. Borrowed pens

How often do we borrow pens or lend our pens to others? Too often, right? Although. Sometimes you just can’t avoid sharing pens at work, school and at home. That’s fine, but wash your hands after using sharing. The average office pen has ten times the germs of the average office toilet seat, at about 200 bacteria per square inch, according to the Wall Street Journal.

9. Soap dispensers or pumps

Researchers from the University of Arizona found refillable soap dispensers especially germ-laden. As you’re pressing the pump, any bacteria you’re hoping to wash off has an equal opportunity to get transferred onto the dispenser. So it is better to carry a personal waterless hand wash to avoid using public soap dispensers.

10. Pretty much anything in an airport

Safe travels also means travelling that involves the least amount of contact with the germs and the bacteria at the airports and on the planes. According to the Federal Aviation Administration, some 2.6 million airline passengers travel every day. More people means more germs, and more shared public surfaces where you’ll encounter them. If you are unaware, here is something you should know; people put their dirty shoes and bags in those trays, leading to contamination, according to research published in BMC Infectious Diseases.



Skip to content