Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Oh, Be Careful Little Hands


Did you know I'm married to a Scientist? Well...not exactly unless you consider him to be a Common-Sense Scientist.  Long before e-Coli or Salmonella bacteria hit the radar in research studies,  my DH expressed concern about the cleanliness of common things our hands contact in public.  It's a well documented topic today.  Typical spots that rank high on the chart are bathrooms, public telephones, cell phones, and door knobs.  These are horrible breeding ground for GERMS.Recently, more talk about GERMS made the news in this article: Fecal Matter Found on 72 Percent of Grocery Carts .  This comes to no shock to us.  After all my husband, the Common-Sense Scientist pointed out years ago that grocery cart handles are NOT clean.  

An observational study done in secret reported in 2010 that 93% of the women wash their hands after going to the restroom, whereas only 77% of the men washed up before exiting the bathroom.  If this is the case, then why is there so much fecal matter found on the grocery cart?  Logic tells me something is terribly wrong with this picture. 

Could it be the study is inaccurate?  Are the scientists as observant as they should be? From past experience, I've notice women only rinsing their hands at best before leaving the restroom with few actually using a cleanser.  What about getting out of the bathroom? Could these people who are washing their hands being re-infested? 

In addition to the hand washing issue or lack of causing this problem, two prominent things stand out in my mind which may lend some importance.  Raw vegetables and meat are common grocery items placed near the handle. These items could be contaminated.  The media has reported several stories in recent months about such problems.   Also, young children in diapers sit in the kiddie compartment.  While this poses a small problem, I'm more concerned about cross contamination from the grocery items than I am the baby.  What about your baby being vulnerable to these harmful bacteria?  Does this alarm you? 

The next time you go shopping, consider taking some anti-bacterial wipes or alcohol towlets to swab down the handle or use a pair of cheap vinyl gloves before you grab your cart or consider pulling your cart from the front,  like I do.  Keep in mind, whatever is on your hands is placed on each surface you touch.  Avoid putting your hands near your face until you can properly wash them.  This increases the immediate risk to you and your young children of e-Coli or Salmenella poisoning.  Finally, after you load the car up with all those grocery and head home, don't forget to disinfect your hands before grabbing your steering wheel. 

Anything you can do to safeguard yourself against GERMS will be better than doing nothing at all.  "Oh, be careful little hands what you touch."

Be wise. Keep healthy!


6 comments:

  1. Also don't forget about the change the cashier gives you...yuck....of course the way things are going we get less change anyway. The number one help to me is wash your hands often.

    ReplyDelete
  2. @Donnie...Absolutely washing your hands often is the key to fighting problems with spreading germs. One thing to do with the change is do not put it in your wallet until after you can pour some rubbing alcohol over it when you get to the car. I know this sounds extreme, but if you're concerned about it like I am, then this adds a little peace of mind you've taken the extra step. Of course, it's rare we get change back. We perfer to pay with plastic.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Interesting thougths. My mother has mentioned rather often that she thinks serious diseases are going to start becoming rampant in our society again. One reason being that cleanliness has taken a decline.

    I really should work on making myself more aware of where germs could be lurking and when I'm out and about, take precautions. An ounce of prevention.....

    Thanks for the reminder!

    T.W.

    ReplyDelete
  4. @TW...it seems as years come and go, we see more problems with these things. It won't get any better, if folks continue to be neglect about good hygiene. Coughing and sneezing is another alarming problem. Have you noticed how many folks cough or sneeze without making any attempt to cover their mouth? Into the hands is the worse place, but they can use their shoulder or arm. At least the germs won't be as easily transfered. Just a thought. Thanks for stopping by. It's a such a pleasure to share my blog with a new reader/friend.

    ReplyDelete
  5. Proper hand washing is often overlooked. We have to wash them long enough to kill all the germs!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Interesting thougths. My mother has mentioned rather often that she thinks serious diseases are going to start becoming rampant in our society again. One reason being that cleanliness has taken a decline.

    I really should work on making myself more aware of where germs could be lurking and when I'm out and about, take precautions. An ounce of prevention.....

    Thanks for the reminder!

    T.W.

    ReplyDelete

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