The typical mobile phone is carrying over 25,000 bacteria per square inch. This is dirtier than a kitchen counter (showing 1,736 bacteria per square inch), your dog’s food fish (2,110 bacteria per square inch), and even the common doorknob (8,643 bacteria per square inch). And of course, the most shocking of the facts: your phone is dirtier than a toilet seat.
Avoiding Sticky Situations – Keeping Dirt and Grime off Your Device
Now that you know just how disgusting your mobile phone can be, you may feel like getting rid of it altogether. Such drastic measures are quite unnecessary, however, and instead, you can follow a few simple rules to protect your phone—and your health.
Don’t share your phone with others
Bacteria and viruses are both spread by contact with others, and the presence of these microbes on your phone is a key way to facilitate that contact. One piece of good news is that you are likely resistant to much of the germs currently populating the surface of your phone. This means that if you are the only person using your phone, you’ll likely avoid contamination. However, if you share your phone frequently with others, the chances of acquiring more viruses and bacteria on that phone are higher. To stay your safest, try to avoid sharing your phone with other individuals. While this might be a tough rule to stick to 100% of the time, you’ll have a cleaner phone if you keep your device to yourself.
Don’t bring your phone to the toilet
It’s shocking how many of us admit to using our phone while visiting the toilet. It seems these mobile devices are so addicting we can barely put them down! Sadly, the bathroom is a highly unclean environment and might be responsible for most of the gross bacteria that end up on our phones. Experts say that stopping the practice of carrying your phone along to the toilet with you is key for minimising germs. When you need to use the toilet, simply leave your phone at your desk, or at least put in your pocket or handbag. It will be there when you return, clean (or at least cleaner) and ready to be used.
Don’t bring your phone to the gym
The gym is another place where many of us enjoy using our mobile phones. But these spots are rampant with bacterial growth. The typical gym sees perhaps hundreds of members visiting daily, each of whom is using the machines, free weights, and other equipment, perspiring all the while. Want to get your gym on? Leave the phone at home. If you’re insistent on bringing your device to the gym (for listening to music or recording workout stats, for instance) be sure to wipe it down thoroughly after your session.
Don’t use your phone while eating
If you’re wanting to transmit fewer bacteria to your mobile phone, it’s a good idea to put the device aside during mealtimes. Your mouth is one of the leading ways you can catch a germ, so keeping your dirty phone away while you’re eating is a smart habit.
Learn to wash your hands properly
The truth is, most of the germs that end up on your phone come from the surfaces it touches as well as your hands. Keeping those hands as clean as possible is the first line of defence for your mobile phone. Wash your hands often throughout the day, and always after using the toilet and before and after eating. Take time to learn how to wash your hands thoroughly and correctly. Far too many people rush through the hand-washing process or miss crucial steps altogether. Hand Hygiene Australia has valuable info here.
Clean your phone on a regular basis
Be sure to wipe and clean your device on a regular basis. Experts suggest that once every couple of weeks should be sufficient, but if you’re in particularly germ-heavy environments (or if you can’t seem to break that ‘bringing the phone to the toilet’ habit) you may want to consider cleaning it more frequently. Read on for the best methods of cleaning your mobile phone.