Does covering your toilet seat make you any less exposed to germs?


Using a public toilet is a nuisance for most people, even when they have to hold it in for as many as several hours. Multiple studies have shown that women who refrain from urinating when they feel the need to do so tend to develop urinary infections far more often than those who choose to pay a short visit to the public restroom.

Whether we encounter it at home or while we’re out and about, one of the issues that seem to be on our minds is if covering the toilet seat can actually protect us from being exposed to unnecessary germs. Some of us go to extreme lengths in that they choose to use as much toilet paper as possible just to avoid sitting on the bare seat. Others have nothing against tending to their business while they’re standing.

But we all know that there are risks to both of these situations. On the one hand, bacteria has no problem whatsoever with passing through toilet paper as the latter is absorbent. On the other, going while standing can accidentally lead to a splash that meets your nether parts, which, in turn, makes you feel anything but comfortable and even brings forth the neverending worry of an infection occurring.

The good news is that many experts posit that contracting an infection is virtually impossible if you were to sit on that seat. In fact, the chances of any germ going through your skin are slim, to say the least, unless your rear has been scratched, cut, or has suffered from any such mishap that might allow the bacteria to come in direct contact with your blood.

The flush is the real trouble. If you don’t make an effort to put the toilet seat back down once you’ve tended to your business, you could be exposed to fecal matter and wouldn’t even know it. Even when you’re in the comfort of your personal bathroom, you should make a habit out of putting the seat down unless you want to wash your teeth with an extra dose of intestinal bacteria. Sure, the only advantage to this situation would be that the bacteria would probably belong to you.

Even getting the right shape of bowl is complicated, let alone choosing the best toilet. While some argue that, from a hygienic standpoint, elongated bowls are to be preferred, no studies have managed to suggest this. To sum up, if you have to go, you can do so in a public restroom as long as your nether parts are structurally sound. Just make sure to put the seat down every time you use the toilet.