Under the roof of your house or about bacteria living in our houses

Kitchen & toilet

Scientists from NSF International in Michigan tested 22 homes. The researchers found that dishwashing sponges contain the highest numbers of microorganisms, followed by toothbrush holders, pet bowls, kitchen sinks, coffee containers, kitchen countertops, oven handles, pet toys, and toilet seats.

In the course of the study, on many wooden, glass and plastic surfaces, scientists have identified

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yeast and mold, coliform bacteria (including Escherichia coli), Staphylococcus, Streptococcus and Corynebacteria, Staphylococcus aureus, and Leptosphaerulina chartarum, Epicoccum nigrum and Wallemia sebi.

Microbiologist Charles Gerba, professor of public health, environmental science and immunology at the University of Arizona, is confident that many people think that the most dangerous place in the house is the bathroom, where the toilet is, but this is not so. The kitchen sink has more faecal bacteria than the toilet after being flushed. For this reason, dogs can safely drink water from the toilet, and these animals cannot be fooled. In children and adults, fecal bacteria can cause stomach cramps, lead to disorders of the gastrointestinal tract (nausea, vomiting, diarrhea), and provoke the appearance of bowel and kidney diseases.

The professor recommends closing the toilet lid when flushing to prevent the spread of bacteria to surrounding objects. A strong stream of water lifts bacteria into the air, after which they settle on personal hygiene items (toothbrush, towel, soap).

Scientists at Seoul National University in Korea have studied bacteria that live on the surfaces of refrigerators and toilet bowls. They found that many of the harmful microorganisms live on human skin, which means that humans are also the source of many microbes.


The most common inhabitants of bedrooms are bed bugs, which can become guests of any home, regardless of sanitary conditions. People can bring them home on themselves, with new furniture or things (from transport, public places or from neighbors). Bedbugs are active at night, so in warm seasons they can enter the room even through windows. If you noticed black dots on the bed or clothes, found bites on the body, waking up in the morning, these are bugs and you need to get rid of them.

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Alena Atamanenko, therapist of the ON Clinic Kharkiv medical center, notes:

“Bedbug bites can cause allergic reactions, infectious diseases, sleep disturbances. It is necessary to disinfect the premises when parasites are detected and prevent their appearance. First of all, keep your home clean. “

Other subjects

According to the UNICEF study, also in the list of the most dangerous objects on which bacteria “live” are game steering wheels and joysticks, armrests of upholstered furniture. For example, for every 100 sq. see game joysticks and steering wheels account for more than 7 thousand germs. According to scientists, this is almost 5 times more than on the rim of the toilet. There are more than 19 thousand harmful microorganisms on the armrests of armchairs and sofas, and on the seat – 12 times less. To reduce the number of microbes on such surfaces, you need to clean them with alcohol or soap solutions.

The places where bacteria accumulate are:

  • toothbrushes that need to be changed every 3-4 months;
  • wet items after washing that require immediate drying.

You need to disinfect small things (keys, telephones, control panels), as well as items in a woman’s cosmetic bag (sponges, eyeshadow and blush brushes, cotton swabs). Manicure sets also need to be treated with attention: do not give them to strangers and wipe them with alcohol solutions after each use. I advise you to give guests a separate guest set, which may consist not only of slippers and towels, but also cosmetics in disposable bottles.


Bacteria also live on the skin and in the human body, most of which are necessary for the normal functioning of many organs and systems. For example, fungi of the genus Candida in women are part of the normal microflora of the vagina, but due to the action of many factors (hypothermia, unprotected sexual intercourse), they can lead to the development of thrush.

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Inga Chabanenko, a gynecologist at the ON Clinic Odessa medical center, recommends:

“Always practice good personal and intimate hygiene. Each family member should have their own face and body towel, soap, and other bathing products. The contact-household route of infection remains relevant for the herpes virus, gonococcus, syphilis and other diseases. “


Pets are a storehouse of bacteria and viruses. The bowls of our favorites contain especially a lot of bacteria. Employees of the Organization for Public Health and Safety found that there are more than 473 thousand bacteria in the feeders per 10 square meters. m, including E. coli and staphylococcus. Animal bowls need to be cleaned every day, and the safest ones are those made of glass or stainless steel. Bacteria are also found in the mouth and faeces of pets. For this reason, you need to monitor the hygiene of pets and the fact that personal items are not in the area of ​​accessibility of animals.

Bacteria and allergies

An allergy develops when the body takes a substance as a threat and reacts with an immune response. American scientists have proven that microbes in our homes can cause allergies. At the same time, some bacteria such as Bacterioides, Bifidobacterium, Faecalibacterium and Enterobacteria promote the formation of cells that resist allergies.

Professor Peccia discovered that beneficial probiotic bacteria should “live” in the home, protecting against allergies and asthma. No need to mop the floor or dust the cupboards three times a day. Frequent cleaning reduces the body’s resistance to pathogenic microbes, which, in the first place, increases the risk of respiratory diseases. Professor Peccia states: Faecalibacterium prausnitzii is anti-inflammatory and prevents the development of Crohn’s disease. In a separate study, the professor’s team found that yeast in the Kondoa mushroom class created a barrier to severe asthma. For these reasons, the professor recommends not rushing to throw away the starter cultures stored in the refrigerator for making beer, kvass or yogurt. This proves that excessive sterility can be just as detrimental to our health as its absence.

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How to get along with bacteria?

  • Change kitchen towels every 3-4 days.

    Good bed - good morning

    Good bed – good morning

    bed linen – once a week. A humid environment is an ideal breeding ground for bacteria. Clean the kitchen every day after cooking. Always wash your cutting boards, especially after meat. Raw meat can be a source of Escherichia coli or salmonellosis.

  • Clean the kitchen, toilet, and bathroom at least once a day with cleaning disinfectants containing bleach. Use a weak chlorine solution (mix 1 tablespoon of chlorine with 3.8 liters of water) to wipe cutting boards, sink, surfaces and floors, tap handles.
  • Clean up the area where pets live, keep them hygienic. After outside, be sure to wash your paws for cats, dogs and other pets.
  • Wipe the dust at least 1-2 times a week, ventilate the room for at least 10-15 minutes a day.

Vita Melashchenko, a dermatovenerologist at the ON Clinic Poltava medical center, advises:

“Always wash your hands before eating and after using the toilet to prevent bacteria from entering your body. Oddly enough, people do not follow this simple and banal rule, which leads to infection of the body or food poisoning. “

Bacteria are all around us and the best way to keep them under control is to set your own rules of the game. Take care of the place where you live, yourself and the pets you take care of. I’m sure bacteria will be afraid of you!

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