The Bacteria Apocalypse!


© Dr. Simon Park/ University of Surrey

Did you know that picking your nose can lead to something that can put yourself in danger?

We have all done it, no denials please. We have all one point or another in our lives have done what is known as the unthinkable to some. Yes ladies and gentlemen, I am talking about nose picking. Now I know some of you guys right now are probably going like “huh? Me and nose picking? Gross.” But let’s be honest it happened whether we like it or not. It can be memories we have tried to suppress but it is time to come back to reality and face it. To many people it’s a big deal, an uncomfortable matter of some sort. To others, it’s actually quite casual; no effect on them whatsoever. However today I wanted to mention something, something that will change your interpretation of picking your nose…and that is it can accumulate pathogens and bacteria.

Can you believe it?!

Something that we have probably been doing before we can talk can lead to bacteria. Now whether or not that bacteria is harmful or not, we will get into.

How the bacteria travels is very simple. We pick our noses and then we send a text message. Hence now all the bacteria is on our phone. No matter how clean and sparkly and shiny your phone looks, in reality it is actually covered with bacteria. Every inch and crevice is most likely covered by the bacteria. A study had been done by Dr. Simon Park for his molecular biology course. And he says:

“As part of a course called Practical and Biomedical Bacteriology, an undergraduate module that I run, I get the students to imprint their mobile phones on to bacteriological growth Petri dishes so that we might determine what they might carry.”

The results that he found with his students were uncanny. They had found that the phone was covered by the speeding growth of a bacteria called Bacillus Mycoides. What was strange about this discovery you can say was that the natural habitat of this bacteria is soil, however its speedy growth on a cell phone shows that a cell phone doesn’t just remember telephone numbers, but also carries a history of our personal and physical contacts such as other people, the environment (such as any place that has soil) as well as other types of matter.

Now most of the bacteria found on one’s phones are harmless, although very few aren’t. The likes of Staphylococcus aureus which is known to be a common cause of Staph infections (food poisoning, impetigo and even septicaemia) showed up, too. And where this bacteria arouses from is from within the human body. And this is where it all connects back to picking our noses. When we pick our nose and answer that phone call, especially with smart phones nowadays we have to swipe the screen to unlock the phone and answer the call, or whenever we send a text message or continue playing temple run 2 (yes it gets quite addicting) we are transferring those pathogens, those bacterium straight onto our phones.

So guys, stay healthy and happy. No need to panic because we have immune systems which can help fight off all sorts of bacterium and other threats but we have to take good care of ourselves to build our immune system to be strong. Eat right, dress warm during these cold winter days and next time think twice before you let that finger go into the deep depths of a nostril. (Let’s just grab some napkins) And also, I know majority of you guys are probably already on it, but yes someone please pass the disinfectant. Wipe that phone! They have witnessed a lot!

Image from © Dr. Simon Park/ University of Surrey

Source: [Daily Mail – UK]

2 thoughts on “The Bacteria Apocalypse!

  1. If you culture most of your belongings, you’ll find similar results. We did this in my microbiology class with Prof Dabydeen, and we were shocked to find that the only surface rhat we cultured that was not heavily colonized wirh microorganisms was the lab desks. Thus was probably because they are disinfected so often. Just one thing to keep in mind is that our bodies develop immunity by exposure to pathogens, so don’t go crazy with the disinfectant!

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