The Ugly Truth About Public Restrooms And How A Traveler Can Prevent Taking The Scare On The Road
We don't have to travel far to find a public restroom, they are everywhere and sometimes we encounter the need of one of them. However don't go getting lax about the ugly reality of some of the scariest facts of what await you when utilizing these public facilities.
1 - Airborne Bacteria - Yep we all have gone into a bathroom at some point in a public location and been overwhelmed by a scent of something not so pleasant. Standing water in toilets breeds a germ frenzy which are created by users and lack of proper upkeep facilitating all these users. To avoid this you can simply flush before you use and lower your chances of exposure to these toxins and germs.
2 - Avoid the Dryers - Sure it seems like a less evasive way to cleanse your hands when visiting a local restroom, but the dryers are actually far more germ ridden than the towelette options many restrooms offer. According to many studies hand dryers have bacteria levels up to 30 times higher not only from the touch of the machine itself but from the coils inside which contain dust and debris unseen in many typical cleanings.
3 - The Door - Yep entering and exiting can be your worst experience of the entire trip to the restroom as you touch the door to let yourself out and might pick up germs from not only those accessing the door and those which are airborne but also from those which have not previously washed their own hands. Men's bathrooms have been known to have trace amounts of feces and urine while women's contain yeast in alarming doses. To lessen your chances of contact with these simply open the door with a paper towel, it won't completely eliminate your contact but it will make it far less likely.
So what can a person who is traveling do to to avoid these scares?
While it might seem scary sounding, public restrooms are unavoidable when you are not at home. You can carry antibacterial hand wash and sanitizer and this will help, but in addition just remember simple things like opening doors with a paper towel, not bringing food items in your travel pack into the restroom, instead have someone else hold your bag if traveling with another person.
For those using public facilities for showers, bring along shower shoes for your travels and allow them to fully dry if possible in a well ventilated area after use. On the same note of moisture, allow your towel to dry fully before using it again by flat or line drying it. To do this you can string a line within your tent if possible to protect your items while you are not at your campsite. if this is not possible then using the back seat of your car can be helpful however also allow your seats to have an opportunity to dry from moisture and thoroughly clean your seats upon your return home.