Next time you need to make a call, beware:
Telephones are a virtual petri dish for germs. In fact, even the
most innocuous office equipment could harbor a potential cold or
flu, according to the Chicago-based National Association of Medical
In a study conducted by the University of Arizona, it was found
that the average office phone is festering with more than 20,000
germs per square inch; a typical computer keyboard is home to about
3,000, and the average computer mouse has 1,500. To put it in
perspective, most bathroom surfaces contain around 50 germs per
square inch, according to researchers.
To make matters worse, germs easily move from surface to
surface, hitchhiking on peoples’ hands from telephones to copy
machines to water coolers. The solution? Since 80 percent of
infectious diseases are spread by hand-to-hand contact, make hand
washing a habit, say experts. And if that’s not convenient, opt for
an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, such as Purell.