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Wednesday, March 15, 2023

Reusable Water Bottles Store 40,000 Times More Bacteria Than A Toilet Seat, Says Study

Reusable water bottle: Reusable water bottles have been popular for a while now in terms of sustainability. But, as the “emotional support water bottle” craze swept throughout the internet, users of apps like TikTok and Instagram have begun to attach a more personal significance to the alternatives to plastic bottles. Despite the fact that we love our favourite ‘reusable’ water bottles—Yetis, Hydroflasks, Stanley Cups, you name it—a new study discovered that, if stored carelessly, these dependable buddies might house more germs than a toilet seat.

According to a recent study on the US website waterfilterguru.com., reusable bottles can contain 40,000 times more bacteria than the typical toilet seat.

Two species of bacteria, gram-negative rods and bacillus, were discovered by a team of researchers from the US-based waterfilterguru.com after swabbing the squeeze-top lid, spout lid, screw-top lid, and stray lid three times each. 

Spout, screw-top, stray, and squeeze-top water bottles were all used in the study, which was carried out by researchers at the US-based group.

Several bottle components were swabbed by the researchers who then observed the colony-forming units (CFUs) that grew inside of them. CFU is a measure used to quantify the amount of bacteria present in any sample.

“They are objects that can’t betray us,” Australian Catholic University clinical psychologist and hoarding disorder expert, Associate Professor Keong Yap, said, comparing the phenomenon with objects children use to soothe anxiety (like stuffed toys). “They are reliable and predictable, unlike people who can hurt us,” Mr Yap added. 

According to their study, some bacillus species might cause gastrointestinal problems, whilst gram-negative bacteria can cause infections that are becoming more difficult to treat with medications. According to their assessment of the hygiene of the bottles to other household items, they can harbour twice as many germs as a computer mouse, four times as many as a kitchen sink, and fourteen times more than a pet’s water dish.

“The human mouth is home to a large number and range of different bacteria,” Imperial College London molecular microbiologist, Dr Andrew Edwards, said, as per New York Post. “So it’s not surprising that drinking vessels are covered in microbes,” he added. 

However, even though bottles may serve as a breeding ground for high numbers of bacteria, a microbiologist at the University of Reading, Dr Simon Clarke, said that it is not necessarily dangerous. “I’ve never heard of someone getting sick from a water bottle. Similarly, taps are clearly not a problem: when did you last hear of someone getting ill from pouring a glass of water from a tap? Water bottles are likely to be contaminated with the bacteria that are already in people’s mouths,” Mr Clarke remarks.

Scientists recommended washing reusable bottles at least once a day with hot soapy water, and sanitising them at least once a week to avoid drinking contaminated water.

(Disclaimer: This article is based on general inforamtion available as per the study. Zee News does not confirm this.)

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