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Fecal Bacteria is Everywhere

Updated on August 8, 2017
North Wind profile image

A bit of a germophobe simple because I hate sore throats and cannot live through fever, I try to be diligent about proper hygiene.

Source

The idea that fecal bacteria is everywhere is not comforting at all but, unfortunately, it is true. Fecal bacteria, from humans and animals can lurk in the least expected places and you could unknowingly infect yourself with it if you are not careful.

The latest spot that fecal bacteria has been discovered is in the ice that your favorite coffee drinks are made with. Yes, that ice has been found to contain some traces of fecal bacteria and that means that there have been many of us who have, unknowingly, drank fecal bacteria laced coffee. The worst thing about it is, in my opinion, we do not even have a clue where it came from! (Not that knowing makes it much better.)

This revelation helps me to understand better why people get viruses when they have not been around anyone ill as far as they know, and when they have been doing everything right, and still fall ill.

The Influenza Virus
The Influenza Virus | Source

Obvious places where fecal bacteria and other germs lurk

There are quite a few obvious places fecal bacteria is found. The toilet is at the very top, of course. This bacteria is easily transported out of the bathroom by many who - neglect to wash their hands, do not wash hands properly or touch items before washing their hands properly.

I think most people, well, I hope most people fall into the last two categories. It is amazing how many things that we can (and sometimes do) touch before we get to the sink. We can touch other items in our bathroom, we touch the doorknob to get out of the bathroom (if it is a public one), and we also touch the faucet to turn on the water. Little do we realize that we are leaving behind traces of this bacteria that can cause serious illness.

Cell Phones and Money

How many times do we run to answer the cellphone after using the bathroom and quickly rinse our hands? If it happens once then there is the chance that there is fecal bacteria on your cell phone. This does not only have to come from you. A simple thing like paying for your morning cup of coffee or putting a dollar in the Salvation Army donation box could cause you to transfer fecal bacteria to your cell phone, wallet, face and even mouth if you touch money without sanitizing your hands after.

This is because money is one of the most germ-filled things you can ever find. One dollar potentially passes through the hands of millions of people from all walks of life doing all sorts of things (draw your own conclusions) then it comes to you when you are given your change from buying that delicous steak sandwich and you think nothing of pocketing it and then using those same hands to take a bite of that sandwich. Or how about when you are given your fries when you are waiting for the rest of your order and you start to eat your fries with your fingers?

Paper money loves germs and although most of the germs on the money is dormant, there have been some dangerous ones found. 1A study done on Influenza's ability to survive on banknotes was done and it showed that the flu virus could last from anywhere between two hours to two days on a bill! This means that all it takes is one person, miles away from you, to cough or sneeze on their money before paying, and then have that money pass through many others people until it finally finds you. Three days later you wake up with a scratchy throat and have no idea how or why you got sick!


Are you mindful of germs when handling money

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This is something that fascinates me and horrifies me. Germs are everywhere.

As Marie Barone said in an episode of Everybody Loves Raymond, "Someone sneezed on you at the airport? You can have anything from anywhere!"

It is easy to suspect an attack on our immune systems when we can see it, like the sneeze at the airport but it is not as easy when it travels through regular actions that happen on a daily basis.

Some other places bacteria and germs lurk are:

  • The shopping trolley or basket handles
  • The remote control
  • The door handles of taxis and cars
  • The entrances and exits of supermarkets or stores
  • The computer keyboard
  • Stationery


What Can I do to Protect Myself?

Most people think that they will be alright with the germs and bacteria around them and this is probably true once you are not someone who touches your face or often puts your hands in your mouth because of a nervous habit like nail-biting. As someone who does both I have found that there are quite a few things I can do to help me. Since I have been doing these things I have not caught the cold or had a virus in quite some time.

  • Use hand sanitizer or antibiotic wipes when out and unable to find a sink
  • Wash hands often and throughly with soap
  • Always disinfect after touching money
  • Never touch food with dirty hands
  • disinfect cell phone regularly
  • disinfect remote control regularly
  • disinfect doorknobs regularly



Although fecal bacteria is everywhere there is a way you can protect yourself and your family and a way you can prevent the spread of it as well.

It is basically disinfect, disinfect, disinfect!


1.Survival of Influenza Virus on Banknotes. http://aem.asm.org/content/74/10/3002.full

© 2017 North Wind

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    • Peggy W profile image

      Peggy Woods 2 months ago from Houston, Texas

      I am very cognizant of germs and where they can linger. Sterile technique was a must in the operating room. Ever since working there as a young RN some things have stayed with me. I keep short nails and hardly ever wear nail polish. Short nails are easier to keep clean. Even a chip in nail polish can harbor germs. Hand washing is a must! Good article.

    • North Wind profile image
      Author

      North Wind 10 months ago from The World (for now)

      I thought I was the only one who wore house clothes! I know so many who wear the same thing inside and outside of the house. I can't do it because as soon as I get home I want to be comfortable and take off the 'world' so to speak.

      Yes, I think balance is key. We do need to build up a resistance but at the same time we need to be vigilant as well.

      Thanks so much for the comment.

    • Ericdierker profile image

      Eric Dierker 10 months ago from Spring Valley, CA. U.S.A.

      We are quite cognizant of this in my family. When I take my boy to pee pee in a public place we do not even wash our hands. The pee that might have gotten on our hands is sterile, what is on the door handle and the faucet handle is not.

      I then like lanolin based hand wipes.

      On the other hand we do not freak out on stuff. We protect and so get very little but that very little helps build up our body's defenses.

      We have about a 1 minute window walking into our home to takes shoes off outside and then quickly change clothes to house clothes.

      Nice write here friend.

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