Many people have a tendency of taking their phone into the toilet. However, by practicing this seemingly harmless habit, you can expose yourself and others to many dangerous germs and bacteria.

Never Use Your Phone in a Toilet

Dr. Lisa Ackerley, a hygiene expert, explains that if you pick up your phone immediately after wiping your private parts, you transfer the bacteria from your hands to your phone.

So, washing your hands after using the bathroom is practically pointless because, as soon as you touch your phone, the bacteria will end up back on your hands.

What Types of Bacteria Can You Get?

If you use your phone in the bathroom, you are exposed to the following bacteria:

E.coli – a bacterium commonly found in the intestines, where it doesn’t usually cause any harm. However, in some cases, this bacterium can cause severe abdominal cramps, vomiting, bloody diarrhea, anemia, as well as kidney failure.

Salmonella – a bacterium that can cause food poisoning by eating contaminated foods. If you transfer these bacteria from your phone to your food, you can endanger your health.

A salmonella infection is characterized by fever, nausea, vomiting, headache, abdominal cramps, diarrhea, and blood in the stool. In rare cases, this infection can also lead to dehydration, bacteremia, and reactive arthritis.

C. difficile – a bacterium that infects humans, which causes abdominal pain, nausea, and fever. A severe infection, however, can result in an inflammation of the colon, which may lead to death.

According to Dr. Ron Cutler, director of biomedical science at the Queen Mary University of London, you should avoid taking your phone into the toilet in order to protect yourself from these bacteria.

Dr. Ackerley adds that it is important to remember that viruses don’t transfer only by hands. The spray can travel about six feet from the flush, so you should never leave your toothbrush and your phone near the toilet.

The germs can survive for a couple of days on the phones. And when they heat up, they provide the bacteria with a nice warm environment.

Therefore, you should always wash your hands with soap and water and leave your phone in another room or in your bag before visiting the toilet.