Tags: bathroom | hand | dryer | bacteria | viral

Bathroom Hand Dryer Bacteria Gross-Out Goes Viral on Facebook

Image: Bathroom Hand Dryer Bacteria Gross-Out Goes Viral on Facebook
This bacteria grew from a public bathroom hand dryer in two days. Should you be worried? (Facebook/Nichole Ward)

By    |   Thursday, 08 February 2018 06:55 PM

A viral Facebook post about bacteria in some bathroom hand dryers has scared many away from using them and caused concerns about whether the devices spread dangerous bacteria that could make someone sick.

Nichole Ward shared a photo on Jan. 30 of a petri dish filled with nasty-looking organisms she says grew in 48 hours after she waved it in a public bathroom hand dryer — the kind you stick your hands down into and draw them out slowly — for three minutes. “DO NOT EVER dry your hands in those things again,” she warns. 

The post was shared more than 550,000 times in just a few days and has many people questioning whether it is safe to use the hand dryers, which have replaced paper towels in many public restrooms. 

“Ahhh!” I just used one of those today, and on it it says ‘the most hygenic’ and all I could wonder is what about the air it bloes into your face which is the contaminated air in the bathroom. Fecal matter everywhere!!!!! Gross,” commenter Darby Toth wrote online in response to the post. 

Desire’e Demerson-Reed said, “I never use them!!! But I have found out that a lot of schools have taken out paper towels in the kids restrooms due to budget savings!!! and they wonder why there is so much sickness/superbugs in schools!!!”

Dyson, which makes a popular version of this type of hand dryer, even caught wind of the post and responded with a statement. “We’re very surprised to see these results, and unclear on the methodology employed. All Dyson AirbladeTM hand dryers have HEPA filters that capture particles as small as bacteria from the washroom air before it leaves the machine. Dyson AirbladeTM hand dryers are proven hygienic by university research and are trusted by hospitals, food manufacturers and businesses worldwide,” the statement read, ABC News reported

Inverse Science pointed out that Ward used something in the petri dish that does not exist in public bathrooms to make the bacteria grow, and that there are bacteria, including dangerous ones, on our bodies all the time. Our bodies are made to fight off harmful bacteria and need other kids of bacteria to be healthy. 

The fact that people don’t get sick every time they use a public bathroom or a hand dryer suggests there is nothing especially harmful about the bacteria around a hand dryer or in a public restroom if people use good handwashing procedures, Inverse suggested.

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A viral Facebook post about bacteria in some bathroom hand dryers has scared many away from using them and caused concerns about whether the devices spread sickness.
bathroom, hand, dryer, bacteria, viral
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2018-55-08
Thursday, 08 February 2018 06:55 PM
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