5 Things In Your Bathroom That Can Make You Sick

Jamie Beck, Fine arts and Slideshow editor

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If you have a weak immune system, have problems breathing, experience headaches, dizziness, or any troubles with cuts or scrapes that don’t seem to heal properly, your bathroom could be promoting the problem. Bacteria and other germs can secrete in simple places, and while you may be persistent about washing your hands and keeping certain places very clean, there may be other areas that your lacking in keeping clean. The bathroom is a perfect place for the development of mold and mildew. There is a large amount of humidity and body soil to motivate growth. Mildew is a mold  – it’s not very toxic but it does spread quickly on surfaces like fabrics, grout, and painted surfaces and can irritate breathing.

Light switches, door knobs, and faucet handles also carry a lot of bacteria and germs as well. Not very many people are diligent about washing hands after each trip to the bathroom. And hands can be very dirty when you open the door and switch on the light, switches, knobs, and handles, which carry a lot of body soil, mold, yeast, and bacteria that can make family members very ill. At least once a day you should use disinfecting wipes and wipe everything down; this way you can keep everyone from catching a cold or virus.

Candles can create a restful and romantic mood in your bathroom, but they can also release dangerous chemicals like benzene and ketones. The problems can come from candles made of paraffin wax which is manufactured from petroleum that releases hydrocarbons. Make sure to read labels because candlewicks made in the United States are required to be lead-free but the ones made in other countries could still contain lead. Heavily scented candles can cause irritation to people with allergies and asthma. When burning a candle in a small place like a bathroom, make sure there is a good air circulation to reduce health problems.

Shower brushes, scrubs, and loofahs are great for removing dead skin cells and body soil. They are all also really great at maintaining all the body soil, yeast, and bacteria so the next time you use them they are easily spreading it all back. If you are you using one of these every day, you can create micro-tears in your skin making it even more of a possibility to get a bacterial infection. After using one of these scrubbing tools you should wash them with soap and rinse well after doing so. Remove them from the shower and leave them out to hang and air dry where there is good air circulation.

Having less laundry to do is always a good thing and bath towels can be used more than once if they are dried completely between the use of them. Problems often start when a shower or hand towels and bath mats are being shared or not washed often. Athlete’s foot can be transferred through shower towels as well as bacteria if hands are not washed thoroughly. Hand and bath towels should be changed daily and disinfected properly, especially if someone in the home is sick.