How to Use Public Restrooms Safely
Public toilets have always been a cause for concern among everyone when it comes to using them. Since these restrooms have been open to the public, it makes the space more prone to germs lurking on mostly all of the surfaces. So, 5-Minute Crafts suggests some tips below on how to stay safe from the restroom nasties.
1. Keep your hands covered so as to not touch any surfaces.
As mentioned above, almost every surface in a public restroom is engulfed in germs, so before touching anything, cover your hand with wipes and tissues to avoid having any direct contact with these surfaces. You can carry wipes in your pocket or purse, just in case the restroom doesn’t have any tissue paper available.
2. Maintain your distance in the restroom as well.
In the restroom, it is advisable to stay 6 feet away from other people. And if the restroom is small with just a few stalls, ensure that you are the only person using it at that particular time.
3. Keep the odors at bay by covering your face.
If there’s an air freshener available in the restroom, make the most of it. If not, then cover your nose with your arm, sleeve, or scarf if you are carrying one.
4. Choose the right restroom stall to use.
Usually, people choose the middle stall because it’s in the center, but the first stall is always the cleanest because not many choose to use it. Researchers also found that if the middle stall is taken, men use the stall that is closest to the door and women take the one that is the farthest away.
Another point to note is that, just because the stalls farther away are not used often, it doesn’t mean they’re cleaned often too. So, avoid using those stalls as well.
5. Assess the toilet seat before you use it.
Check to see how the toilet seat looks before you sit on it. Look out for any kind of dampness or discoloration. If there is any, then bunch up some toilet paper and wipe the seat off. Make sure to not touch the seat with your hands. If there are no seat covers available, then put up some fresh toilet paper over the seat’s surface before you sit on it.
- It is recommended to not squat or hover over the toilet seat as it can tense up your pelvic muscles and your bladder won’t empty properly.
6. Flush the toilet with caution.
Some public restrooms have automatic flushes installed. But if it has a manual flush, then use the toilet paper to touch the handle and throw it away in the bowl when it begins to flush. If the restroom is really messy, then you can use your foot with your shoe on to flush.
- Make sure to grab some fresh toilet paper to touch the door handle in order to exit your toilet stall.
It’s also recommended to put the lid down before flushing. Droplets that contain pathogens such as viruses and bacteria can be released into the air when water is discharged within the toilet.
7. Wash your hands correctly.
Dry your hands immediately after you’re done washing, as the germs can be easily transferred to wet hands. It is also recommended to use paper towels instead of using an air dryer.
8. Exit the restroom safely.
When you’re done drying your hands, don’t toss the paper towel yet. Use it to hold the door handle and then exit the restroom.