Reusable water bottle: Reusable water bottles have long been popular when it comes to sustainability. But as the “emotional support water bottle” craze swept the internet, users of apps like TikTok and Instagram have started to give alternatives to plastic bottles a more personal meaning. Despite the fact that we love our favorite “reusable” water bottles — Yetis, Hydroflasks, Stanley Cups, you name it — a new study has found that these trusty buddies can harbor more germs than a toilet seat if carelessly stored.
According to a recent study on the US website waterfilterguru.com. Reusable bottles can contain 40,000 times more bacteria than a typical toilet seat.
Two types of bacteria, gram-negative rods and bacillus, were discovered by a research team at US-based waterfilterguru.com after wiping the squeeze cap, pouring spout cap, screw cap and shaker cap three times each.
Drinking bottles, screw top, shaker and pinch top water bottles were used in the study, conducted by researchers from the US-based group.
Several bottle components were swabbed by the researchers, who then observed the colony forming units (CFUs) growing within them. CFU is a measure used to quantify the amount of bacteria present in a sample.
“They are objects that cannot betray us,” said Associate Professor Keong Yap, Australian Catholic University clinical psychologist and hoarding disorders expert, comparing the phenomenon to objects children use to relieve anxiety (like stuffed animals). “They are reliable and predictable, unlike people who can hurt us,” Mr Yap added.
According to their study, some Bacillus species could cause gastrointestinal problems, while gram-negative bacteria can cause infections that are becoming increasingly difficult to treat with drugs. According to their assessment of the hygiene of bottles with other household items, they can harbor twice as many germs as a computer mouse, four times as many as a kitchen sink and fourteen times as many as a pet water bowl.
“The human mouth is home to a large number and variety of different bacteria,” said Dr. Andrew Edwards, a molecular microbiologist at Imperial College London, according to the New York Post. “So it’s not surprising that drinking vessels are covered in microbes,” he added.
Although bottles can serve as a breeding ground for large numbers of bacteria, a microbiologist at the University of Reading, Dr. Simon Clarke that this is not necessarily dangerous. “I’ve never heard of anyone getting sick from a water bottle. Likewise, faucets are clearly not a problem: when was the last time you heard someone got sick from pouring a glass of water out of a faucet? Water bottles are likely to be contaminated with the bacteria that are already in people’s mouths,” notes Mr Clarke.
Scientists recommended washing reusable bottles with hot, soapy water at least once a day and disinfecting them at least once a week to avoid drinking contaminated water.
(Disclaimer: This article is based on general information available according to the study. Zee News does not confirm this.)
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