Why are high touch surfaces important to disinfect?

Microorganisms like germs are everywhere, and no more so than on our hands. According to Harvard Health, there can be up to 5 million bacteria on your hands alone! The easiest way for a pathogen to make its way from person-to-person is via direct contact (either through breath or touch) between hosts. 

However, our contaminated hands may also leave illness causing bacteria and viruses on everything that we touch. 

Germs can’t survive indefinitely on most hard surfaces. In fact, their numbers will always decline over time, because they’re not receiving the nutrients or living in the environment that they need to survive and multiply – conditions that exist in the human body. 

So while areas that we don’t interact with frequently don’t require more than regular cleaning and disinfecting, high touch surfaces can be a major source of germ transmission. It’s these places that we should target with increased hygiene practices.

 

 

How do germs on high touch surfaces make us sick?

It’s simple, really. We spread illness-causing germs with our hands. In fact, according to a study in the Journal of Hospital Infection, fingers contaminated with a virus (like norovirus) can transfer that virus to up to seven clean surfaces.

When we touch communal surfaces, we leave some of those germs behind. When someone else comes along and touches the surface, and then unknowingly touches their face, those bacteria and viruses can enter their body and make them sick.

What are the top 5 “high touch” surfaces that require more frequent disinfection?

These are areas that we interact with not just daily, but several times a day. It’s this contact frequency from multiple individuals that makes high touch surfaces problematic. 

Even with diligent hand washing, it’s inevitable that we will each transfer new germs to these points, as well as taking some with us.

 

 

Taps and sinks

Research published in Applied and Environmental Biology found that your kitchen and bathroom taps can harbour 44x more bacteria than your toilet seat.

Door handles

Research has shown that viruses present on door handles can be transmitted to up to 60% of workers in an office within four hours.

Light switches

In a study by the American Society for Microbiology, scientists showed that the average light switch in a hotel has over 110 colony-forming bacteria per square centimetre.

Refrigerators and microwaves

According to the University of Arizona, 26% of fridges and about half of the microwaves in workplaces or homes have front panels that are “highly contaminated by growing bacteria”. 

Communal surfaces (like benches and counters)

A study by NSF International found that 32% of household countertops were contaminated by E. coli bacteria, disease causing bacteria found in faecal matter.

 

 

Disinfect high touch surfaces with Viro Surface Cleaner

You can kill 99.99% of bacteria and viruses* on each of these surfaces using Viro Surface Cleaner. Its 3-in-1 formula allows you to clean a surface of dirt and grime before effectively disinfecting bacteria and coronaviruses in 5 minutes.

With no harsh chemicals, it can help defend against the germs that make us sick around the home and office. 

Remember: ALWAYS READ THE LABEL

*Coronavirus (incl. SARS-CoV-2), vaccinia viruses

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