Gross! Guess How Many of Your Co-Workers Aren't Washing Their Hands

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washing their handsEver notice how much time your co-workers spend in the bathroom? Chances are that you don't if they're spending less time than what's considered normal. You pay attention to a colleague's bathroom habits only if they're excessive. Well, it turns out that there is such a thing as spending too little time in the bathroom -- especially when it comes to washing hands. And those in the millennial generation seem to be the worst offenders.

A recent study conducted by Delta Faucet to uncover Americans' bathroom behaviors found that we're not as clean as we think we are, and could well be spreading germs all over the workplace -- especially since only one adult in five leaves the bathroom without washing his or her hands.

Restaurant workers are included in that number, despite numerous signs admonishing employees to wash their hands before they leave. That means that one in five of the people serving your food, or perhaps 20 percent of the people you shake hands with, have not washed their hands since going to the bathroom.

The survey also found that Millennials are about 10 percent more likely to leave the bathroom without washing up than are baby boomers. Other offending demographics?

  • Married people: They wash their hands less often than single people
  • Parents of young children: They lather up less often than those who have grown children or no children at all.
  • Those who earn over $75,000 per year: Use soap and water in the bathroom less often than those who make less.

And you've probably heard that women are more likely to wash their hands than men, but not so much. The difference is a slight one, according to the survey.

Geographically, it's the Northeasterners who wash their hands the most and are most likely to clean their faucets on a daily basis.

So unless you're working exclusively with Northeastern childless female baby boomers who make less than $75,000 per year, chances are that you're being exposed to all sorts of disgusting little microbes at work, and they're not just being spread around the office by people who leave the bathroom without washing their hands. Can't anything be done about this?

Lifestyle expert Victoria Pericon suggests making the hand washing area more inviting with fragrant soap and more appealing towels. Touch and light-sensor-activated faucets can also keep the transfer of germs and dirt from hands to hardware to a minimum -- that's why you see so many of them in public restrooms.

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