There is hardly any place that’s not infested with germs and it is such a common issue that often we don’t even consider it. But germs cannot only make you ill but also reduce productivity to a great extent. Germs are hidden all over your workplace as the Centres of Disease Control and Prevention ( A USA based agency) shows that as much as 80 percent of infections happen by hand contact. This means that most of the places that we come in contact with a harbor for germs and they are contaminated through direct human contact. These facts cannot be ignored as influenza, which is one of the prime diseases caused by influenza, leads to 200 million days loss of productivity all around the globe and the situation is no exception in India.
Where can you find most germs?
Germs are mostly found in areas where you think they can’t be! For instance, telephones and mobile phones top the list with numerous hands and mouths near them. If your office has a community telephone which is used by everyone, you can expect it to be the greatest breeding ground for germs.
Next joins the cue, the buttons of the elevator. You can never tell how many fingers push them every day and the number may increase to thousands in some buildings. Hardly anyone sees the lift buttons being cleaned, but still, you can expect them to be cleaned once in a while.
Then comes the water taps in offices, be it the ones in the washroom or the tap in the filter. It has been estimated the rate of germs and bacteria in such areas is 2.7 million bacteria every square inch. So, it is a convenient option to bring your water from home rather than depending on the office faucet. Close enough the water fountains lie the computer keyboard. No matter whether someone is down with flu or has been infected with allergic infections, everyone uses the keyboard while coughing and sneezing into their hands. You will be shocked to know that the computer keyboard houses more germs and bacteria than the toilet seat. In case you have to share your desktop or laptop with someone at work, make sure that you use disinfectant wipes every time before you lay your hands on them.
Following all these, comes the bathroom where you can find bacteria almost everywhere. You probably don’t know that if you forget to close the toilet seat before flushing water, it might spray the water quite high carrying all the contaminants which often includes fecal matter. Bathrooms should be cleaned every hour but in most cases in India, toilets are cleaned once in a week or so.
There are many things that you can do to steer clear from infections. First of all, when you turn the tap off, make sure that you have a power towel in hand to avoid contamination. Wash your hands- as many times as you can. Every time you have to use a shared keyboard or telephone, wash your hands. Though this might not be possible on a day to day basis, it is imperative to use hand sanitizer before you eat anything. Some are of opinion that if you use them regularly, then you will never be able to develop any tolerance for germs. But it’s better to be safe than to fall sick every now and then.