Tips for Staying Healthy in the Office

Are you and your loved ones getting sick too often? The office can be a great place to share ideas, thoughts - and germs! 

Our offices are a haven for germs, and especially with winter on the way, we’re all looking for that secret to avoid getting sick. Healthy eating and exercise is one part of staying healthy, but so is being in the know – knowing which areas in the office are the ‘germiest’ and therefore should be avoided. Hygiene expert, Natalie Howard, of global hygiene expert Initial Hygiene, lifts the lid on your office’s dirtiest secrets.

Here are the top areas in the office you’re likely to pick up germs:

  • Phones - Hello? This is 25,127 microbes calling…what an unwelcome call! The phone on your desk contains 25,127 microbes – per square inch. Best let them all go to voicemail. 
  • Co-workerS - 80% of office workers still come to work even though they’re showing flu-like symptoms. Be a good colleague and send them home – the extra workload is a pain, but so is getting sick. 
  • Keyboard - Colleague has a cold? Avoid their keyboard. This is where you’re likely to pick it up from. 
  • Office desk - Office desk or toilet seat? The office desk houses 400 times more bacteria than the typical toilet seat. If this doesn’t make you rethink eating lunch at your desk…
  • Toilet cubicles - ‘Spray’ hello to germs! Every time you flush the toilet, a cloud of tiny water droplets filled with urine and faecel matter rises, spreading viruses in the air and infesting others in the washing. It’s called a toilet sneeze – no joke. Be cooperative, close the lid. 
  • Handshakes - Hand washing? No, thanks. Initial Hygiene’s Great Australian Washroom Survey found 54% of Aussies have seen their co-workers leave the bathroom without washing their hands. Make sure soap is accessible, or hand sanitiser, if that’s easiest. 

Finally, if you find the lack of hand washing scary, here’s something to really get you in a tizz about keeping vigilant in the office:

Source: Hygiene Habits Research, conducted by Opinion Matters on behalf of Rentokil Initial. Research was conducted in September 2013 with a minimum Australian sample size of 1000.

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