You may be using your phone on the bus, in a meeting at work or at the dinner table. You may perhaps even be reading this article on your phone. But, what you don’t realise is that the device in your hand is probably dirtier than a toilet seat.
A study conducted by scientists at the University of Arizona showed that phones carry 10 times more bacteria than most toilet seats.
There are several germs collecting there. In fact, “your own hand is the biggest culprit when it comes to putting filth on your phone”, states a report published in US-based Time magazine.
According to a survey conducted by Deloitte, a US-based professional services firm, people in the US alone check their phones at least 47 times in a day. This means that there are at least 47 opportunities for germs and other microorganisms to transfer from your fingers to your phone.
High school students check their phones more often and a paper published by the US National Library of Medicine showed that each of their phones could have at least 17,000 types of bacteria on them.
Apart from this, the human skin is also covered in microbes. So, these natural bacteria and the oils from your hands get passed on to a phone when you use it.
But, what is worse is that apart from just germs, at least 16 per cent of phones have faecal matter on them, as stated in a study jointly conducted by the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine and Queen Mary University of London. The reason? People are using their phones when using the toilet or aren’t washing their hands after they are done. This means that it’s not just on their phones, there is probably fecal matter on all other surfaces that they touch.
Studies have found dangerous pathogens on phones, including E. coli, which could cause severe abdominal cramps, bloody diarrhoea and vomiting. There is also the possibility of a virus spreading if one person is sick and coughs on his or her phone, before handing it off to a friend.
Clean that device
Now, if you’re looking at your phone suspiciously and wondering how you should clean your phone, we have the solution for you.
The best way to do this is to make a solution with a combination of 60 per cent water and 40 per cent rubbing alcohol. Use this solution to wipe the phone.
And definitely keep your phone out of the bathroom.