Germs, bacteria and fungi, there's millions upon millions of them, and that's just on your toilet bowl handle flusher. They are among the world's oldest living things. Records of fossils date back 3.5 billion years. Some we have no defence against.
They were discovered by Antony van Leeuwenhoek (the father of micro-biology) in 1675 but it wasn't until 1848 that Ignaz Fulop Semmelweis made the connection with germs and disease.
Viruses and bacteria can multiply and divide every 20 minutes. One can become 8 million in less than 24 hours.
According to researchers at the University of Michigan, adults catch 2-4 colds on average every year, kids catch a cold 6-10 times every year with doctor visits costing some $40 billion every year. That's 100 million visits, with more that a billion dollars spent on cold remedies alone, every year. It's estimated 36,000 people die every year from the flu. That's a lot of people!
Handling pets, coughing, sneezing and visiting the toilet are the main transmission points. The average office cubicle is the most germ-infested. On an average office desk there are 21,000 germs per sq. inch, 400 times greater than the office toilet seat with has about 50 per sq. inch. Telephones carry 25,000, keyboards 3,000, and computer mice 1,500. Door knobs, elevator buttons, pens and pencils in and out of your mouth, you don't want to know.
Kitchens are the dirtiest places in the house. Cutting boards, counter tops and dish rags the worst, your bathroom is cleaner.
Shopping carts handles are really dirty. The third dirtiest thing, with mucus from children's runny noses, urine, saliva, fecal matter and the blood from raw meat. First and second are playground equipment and public transportation grips.
If you think, going to the hospital if you are sick might save you, guess again. Staphylococcus aureus the antibiotic immune super-bug causes deadly skin infections. In fact, you don't even have to go to the hospital to become infected. The super-bug is 10 times more common than originally thought and is in prisons, schools, and gyms. Check those mats you exercise on.
So, if you want to avoid getting sick from germs all you have to do is wash your hands regularly, for 20 seconds or as long as it takes for you to sing Happy Birthday. Forget the bacterial soaps, it makes no difference, than using plain old soap.
Remember, close the toilet seat before flushing. Germs can be sprayed 20 feet from the bowl. That's hitting the wall on the other side of the bathroom. Maybe the toothbrushes on the counter. I'd take my chances. I'd think twice about touching the toilet seat in the first place?
Girls, don't share make-up. Mascara is the worst culprit and never lick the tips of pencils. You don't want Pink Eye.
Blow dry your hands as compared with a paper towel. Opt for the paper towel. The air hand blower just blows the germs from the washroom around.
Finally, about Gene Simmons, he was caught by TMZ dropping his hamburger on the airport floor and picking it up and eating it, forget about that 5 second rule, it's only a myth. In five seconds 8,000 bacteria are swarming on the surface.