We all have disgusting hygiene habits that we do when nobody’s looking. Below are eight unhygienic habits that you should stop as soon as possible.
Letting Your Dog Lick Your Face
Puppy kisses are the best kind of kisses — or so they say. However, you probably shouldn’t let your dog lick your face (even if you claim that you don’t let them). There is a saying that a dog’s mouth is cleaner than your mouth, and while they do have less bacteria than a human, only 16% of dog oral microbiota overlaps with human microbiota. A dog’s mouth can cause you to get tapeworms or other parasites, food poisoning, and contribute to oral problems such as gingivitis. And just so you know, the infections can go both ways, and you can cause your dog to get sick by licking your mouth!
Sharing a drink or dessert with your friends seems like it would be just fine, but it’s not as harmless as it seems. Even if you each have your own spoon or straw, you swap spit and germs via backwashing. Many diseases such as herpes, strep throat, mono, and colds can be transferred through a single sip, even before you know you are contagious. Just play it safe and get your own drink.
Not Flossing Your Teeth
Only 50% of people floss their teeth daily, but everyone should. Food particles get trapped between your teeth and dental floss is the only thing that can properly remove them. Many people dislike flossing because it can cause their gums to bleed, but your gums should not bleed at all, even in the dentist’s chair. Flossing every day can help keep your teeth clean, remove bacteria, and prevent tooth decay. For other ways to up your dental routine, check out this blog.
Cleaning Your Teeth With Your Nails
If you’re on the go and you don’t have anything to clean out the food stuck in your teeth, you’re probably going to use your fingernail. However, the amount of bacteria, fungus, and yeast that live under your nails can lead to skin infections and even oral infections. When you put your fingers in your mouth, it transfers this bacteria into your mouth. A study published in 2007 found that 67% of nail biters tested positive for bacteria such as Escherichia coli, while only 26.5% of non-nail biters did. Using your nails to clean your teeth can also cause dental damage. Instead, use a toothpick or use floss.
Not Changing Your Sheets
How often do you change your sheets? Once a month? A few times a quarter? You should change them at least once per week! When you sleep, you leave behind all sorts of debris including sweat, dead skin cells, hair, spit, and more. Not washing your sheets can cause allergy flare ups as well as acne. If you’re not a fan of washing your sheets, buy multiple sheet sets so that you can sleep in clean sheets every week.
Forgetting to Wash Your Face
Whether or not you wear makeup, you need to wash your face every night before you go to bed and after intense workouts. During the day, your face collects pollutants from the air and from your makeup, clogging your pores and damaging the skin. You should cleanse your face every night to prevent breakouts and early aging.
Not Cleaning Your Cell Phone
You take your phone everywhere — to the work, to the store, to your friend’s house, and even to the bathroom. The average cell phone contains more germs than a toilet seat! You should clean your phone about once a day, and take off the case to give it a thorough cleaning about once per week. Use an alcohol wipe or a microfiber cloth and rubbing alcohol to remove the bacteria.
Popping Your Zits
Pimples seem to show up at the worst times, and is it really that bad if you just pop it and make it go away? It actually is. A pimple contains debris, oil, and bacteria, and when you puncture a pimple, that gunk can spread to other pores, causing more pimples. If you pop a zit with dirty hands, you can infect your pores and cause more acne. While it can be a test of patience to leave it there, it’s best to let it go away on its own.