The average office can be a veritable petri dish of microorganisms, many of which can make us sick. We are sharing three hotspots identified by experts as loaded with germs in the office. 

Template maker Hloom found that photocopier start buttons are among the most germ-ridden spots in the office, with several billion colony forming units per square mm. 

According to Dr Charles Gerba of the University of Arizona, office desks are the most germ-ridden places in offices for a simple reason – humans. Since we are the most common bacteria source, it makes sense that microorganisms will flourish where we spend most of our time. We eat, work, get visits from colleagues at our desks, and seldom think about cleaning and disinfecting it. A weekly clean with a vinegar solution or antibacterial solution will definitely help avoid some sick days or runny tummies at work. 

CBS News once placed a harmless tracer virus on a single door handle in an average-sized office. The virus simulated the common norovirus in resistance to antiseptics and contagiousness. After 4 hours, sixty per cent of office surfaces such as computers, light switches and work areas were contaminated. 

You can take simple steps to protect yourself and your co-workers from germs that cause diseases, including:

  • frequently washing your hands
  • avoid touching your face, mouth and eyes with unwashed hands. 
  • Clean and sanitise frequently touched objects and surfaces such as your desk, keyboard and mouse regularly. 

If you keep your work environment clean, there is little to worry about, as none of the surfaces in an office building is created to encourage bacterial growth. It is however recommended to give your office a regular professional cleaning service to stop germs in their tracks.