Where Germs Are Hiding In Your Office
We are gearing up for the winter season, and the chances are that catching that flu in the office is highly likely. A study by the U.S Bureau of Statistics posted on Occupational Health & Safety Online found out that working-class individuals in America spent more in the office than anywhere else. Furthermore, the report indicated that one-third of American adults work for at least five hours during the weekends. That said, it is no wonder, some employees have gone on sick leave after picking up a germ, fungi, or virus in the office. But do you know where Germs Are Hiding In Your Office?
Most of these disease-causing, micro-organisms cannot multiply on their own, except during the times when we pick them and move around. While breathing airborne germs may lead to the spread of bugs in the office, touching or coming to contact with contaminated surfaces is one of the means through which bacteria spread. So, what are some of the places where germs are hiding in your office?
Dr. Gerba, a microbiologist at the University of Arizona, conducted surveillance on the extent of contamination in the office. The study showed that the desktops harbor 400 times more bacteria than the toilet seat in the restroom. Further, the surface on which you rest your hand on the desk contains over 10,000,000 micro-organisms. The risks even get higher if you share a desk with other employees because the chances of picking up germs from another person increase. So, which are some of the items with most germs on the desktop:
- Keyboard and mouse – In a study posted on TotalJobs, the average keyboard has over 3,000 germs in every square inch. Additionally, the mouse contains over 1,600 bacteria. These are some of the office equipment that shares hands between employees. That makes them some of the common places where germs get transferred from one person to the other.
- Telephone – Like the office PC, phones are also shared. Office telephones have more than 25,000 germs per square inch. Therefore, you need to use sanitizing wipes to clean the keypad and the phone after use to make them hygienic.
The Kitchen Sink
Another place where germs are hiding in your office is found in the break room: the kitchen sink. Kimberly-Clark, a globally renowned cleaning-products manufacturer, found out that the sink faucet contains over 75% breakroom sinks had an ATP count of over 300. Adenosine Tri-phosphate (ATP) is an organic compound found in animals, vegetable, yeast, etc. Hence the presence of ATP indicates the possibility of germ presence. Typically, you’d want to maintain safer ATP levels of 25 and below. Also, the metal drains have high bacterial concentration. On average, these drains bear over 1,300 ATP molecules.
You store some of your food items in the fridge, and so do your work colleagues. That means that the fridge handle is prone to have a high number of germs since everyone opens it to grab an item. People often forget or ignore washing their hands after visiting the loo. When dirty hands touch the fridge handle, it increases the risks of contracting norovirus, a pathogen that causes gastrointestinal illness. It often causes vomiting. Furthermore, it may cause the spread of Listeria, a pathogen that may cause miscarriage.
It’s also worth noting that raw meals such as meat products should be stored at a separate compartment from ready-to-eat meals. That prevents the spread of bacteria, such as Campylobacter.
Having learned how vulnerable you are to contracting illnesses and germs in the office, it is critical always to maintain hygiene. It is essential to pay attention to personal hygiene; it is also critical to ensure that every inch of the office is sparkling clean.
At BRAVO!, we offer professional janitorial and office maintenance services to ensure you operate in a safe and hygienic office. Let us take care of your office cleanliness so that you can focus on your business.