Top 5 Disturbing Facts about Public Restrooms

Written by Michael Wynands There are some disgusting truths that you can’t flush away. Welcome to WatchMojo’s Top 5 Facts. In today’s instalment we’re counting down the Top 5 Disturbing Facts about Public Restrooms. Come along as we explore some of the less than hygienic details surrounding public toilets and washrooms. Special thanks to our user Ashjbow for submitting the idea on our interactive suggestion tool: WatchMojo.comsuggest
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Top 5 Disturbing Facts about Public Restrooms



There are some disgusting truths that you can’t flush away. Welcome to WatchMojo’s Top 5 Facts. In today’s instalment we’re counting down the Top 5 Disturbing Facts about Public Restrooms.

Come along as we explore some of the less than hygienic details surrounding public toilets and washrooms.

#5: The Blast Radius is Bigger than You Think



People typically stand up before flushing to avoid backsplash. But don’t fool yourself into thinking that the lack of spray on your hindquarters has saved you from germs. You see… when you flush a toilet, the force of the water sends fecal matter and urine mist up into the air, and with bowl itself serving as the epicenter of the blast, you’re allegedly looking at a six foot radius of fallout in the form of bodily waste. Considering it covers such a large area… there’s really no way to flush and get clear of the blast. Even worse, by that logic, if the toilet paper isn’t covered... it’s technically already soiled.

#4: The Hover Squat Only Makes Things Worse



Many of us can’t bring ourselves to make contact with the same surface that so many others mysterious butts have touched before. So we hover above the surface to do our business. Unfortunately, this solution makes us a part of the problem. When you squat above the surface, you increase the initial splash of the bodily fluids or solids hitting the water, resulting in a dirtier surface for the next user. Toilets are actually quite well designed. The smooth porcelain doesn’t give bacteria anything to hold onto, meaning that so long as we all commit to making contact, diminishing splashback, and not leaving damp toilet paper on the seat, we can all sit comfortably!

#3: A Staggering Number of Men Don’t Wash Their Hands Properly



Yeah guys, we get it. You can pee and not wipe. But it’s not the wiping that makes washing your hands a good idea. There’s bacteria all over the place in bathrooms, and no matter how little contact you make, your hands get dirty just by virtue of walking into the space. Which is what makes these figures so disconcerting. According to a survey by the company Initial Washroom Hygiene, 62% of men don’t wash their hands after going to the bathroom. And while not as bad, women aren’t exactly doing much better at 40%. The big cause for concern though? According to a Michigan State university study, 95% of people wash their hands incorrectly.

#2: The Lack of Lids is Really Unfortunate



So… remember the urine and fecal fallout we discussed earlier? Well, it can easily be contained with one simple maneuver - closing the lid. But while this is an easy and effective habit to get into at home, sadly, in most public restrooms, we’ve been robbed of the choice. You can’t really blame the institutions though. With people going out of their way to avoid making contact with public toilets including flushing with their shoe, it seems unlikely that the average person would be willing to open and close a lid they share with strangers. It’s too bad though, as a simple closed lid keeps all that bacteria in the bowl.

#1: Not Even the Soap is Safe



In public restrooms, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by all the potential germs and bacteria. In that den of ickiness, the soap dispenser can start to look like a guardian angel of sorts, a disinfecting hero come to save you from the filth. Sadly, soap dispensers don’t always live up to their reputation. According to a study in the Journal of Environmental Health, published in 2011, based on 500 samples from public restrooms, a quarter of the soap we use is contaminated with bacteria that leaves your hands in worse shape than when you began. It’s disgusting... but true…
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