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10 everyday items that could be dirtier than your toilet bowl

From the flush handle to the seat to the tank, your toilet bowl is a throne swarming with harmful bacteria and germs.

On average, a toilet bowl contains 3.2 million bacteria per square inch*, including germs in toilet water. This is in addition to the bacteria found on the other parts that you have come into contact with, such as the flush handle covered in as much as 83 bacteria per sq. in and the toilet seat surrounded by over 295 bacteria per sq. in.

Dirty enough? Although toilet bowls have acquired quite a reputation as the dirtiest item in an average household or office, science has proven that there are far dirtier items on your premise—and you likely use them regularly.

What could be dirtier than a toilet bowl? Keep on reading to find out.

Cutting Board

Researchers at the University of Arizona found that the average cutting board has 200 more faecal bacteria than a toilet seat and it is mostly from the raw meat you prepare in it.

Pet’s Food Bowl

Your dog can pick up about 296 bacteria per sq. in by licking a toilet seat, but over 2,000 bacteria per sq.in from his food bowl—and normally, no dog licks just one inch.

Mobile Devices

In a 2018 study, Initial Washroom Hygiene found that phones are about 7 times dirtier than toilet seats and the numbers can be worse if you use your phone while on the toilet.


Keyboards can harbour up to 200 times more bacteria than a toilet seat and it is worse if more than one person is using them in a day.

Handles, Switches, and Buttons

The faucet handles, doorknobs, light switches, and elevator buttons in public spaces could also be harbouring more germs than your toilet seats.

Kitchen Sponge

There is an average of 45 billion microbes per sq. cm in a kitchen sponge, the largest amount of which is E.coli—hence, it could be making your dishes even dirtier.

Remote Control

Your remote controls the air-conditioner or TV are also surprisingly dirty. Anything that has been on your hands prior can build-up on your remote overtime.


The very thing that you put in your mouth contains with bacteria, 200,000 bacteria per sq. in, to be exact. So, you may want to reconsider how often you replace your toothbrush.

Office Desk

The average workplace desk can be 100x dirtier than a kitchen table and 400x less hygienic than the average toilet seat. When you do not wash your hands regularly, particularly after using the toilet or eat at your office desk, this may exactly be the case for you.

Reusable Shopping Bags

The meat and other raw food items you pack in your reusable shopping bag tend to leave behind harmful bacteria in it. The commonly found bacteria includes E.coli and other stomach flu viruses.

The Importance of Good Hygiene

With the number of bacteria present in these everyday items and more, it is never been more essential to practice good hygiene in and outside your home.

Proper handwashing is your first line of defence against the diseases caused by germs and bacteria present in these everyday items such as:

  • Flu and common cold
  • Diarrhoea
  • Hand-foot-mouth disease
  • Adenovirus
  • Hepatitis A
  • Meningitis
  • Bronchiolitis

Here is a 8-step guide to handwashing to keep those disease-causing germs and bacteria away. You may also want to consider using a good hand sanitiser as well.

As a specialist in raising hygiene standards in Singapore, Initial Hygiene offers a complete washroom and hygiene solution for your business. We deliver innovative and eco-friendly washroom solutions including foam soap dispensers that promotes lesser use of water.

Contact us today at +6563478138 for more information.

* Source: The Sun, GERM ALERT: This is how many germs are lurking in your bathroom, and you’ll be horrified at the dirtiest spot.

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