NHS doctor warns toilet habit can create ‘raging sewage volcano’ of bacteria

By Staff 6 Min Read

NHS doctor Karan Raj has gone viral after releasing a disturbing video about potential pathogens in our bathroom. It’s safe to say you may want to change your toilet habits after seeing this

A doctor has shared a rather harrowing video that will make you instantly change your loo habits.

We all know it’s polite to shut the bog seat before you flush, but it turns out it’s not just a matter of British etiquette – it’s also about your health. This is because flushing with the toilet seat left up can create a ‘plume’ of pathogens that can spread onto items such as our bath towels and toothbrushes.

NHS surgeon and lecturer at Sunderland University Dr Karan Raj has recently gone viral for showing just how dangerous the mistake can be. Warning, if you’re squeamish, you’ll probably want to look away.

“Every time you flush the toilet with the lid open you create a raging sewage volcano,” he said. “This allows aerosolised toilet juice to travel far and wide. To capture this disgusting tidal wave of microscopic waste and pathogens, scientists use lasers and cameras to capture the movement of tiny water droplets.”

Researchers discovered droplets were able to move at two metres per second and reach heights of 1.5 metres above the toilet bowl in just eight seconds – and were able to linger in the air for ‘more than several minutes’. “Various pathogens like E Coli, adenovirus, and norovirus can all be spewed into the air, riding on the back of these tiny water droplets,” Dr Raj added.

However, shutting the lid directs the water droplets onto the floor. The doctor says Brits should still regularly clean their toilets with disinfectant and remove items like toothbrushes and bath towels ‘away from the line of fire’.

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Back in 2019, researchers from University College Cork analysed the airborn particles in a communal loo over the duration of one week. They concluded that closing the toilet seat reduced the number of both visible and smaller droplets during and after flushing by 30-60 per cent. So for the skeptics out there – yes, it really does make a difference.

Elanor Potter of Plumbworld agrees with the warning – and argues households should put ‘reminders’ in the bathroom to encourage guests and kids to close the lid before they flush. “It’s evident that this simple adjustment in our bathroom habits can have a profound impact on our overall hygiene and health safety,” she said. “This practice, while seemingly minor, plays a crucial role in mitigating the spread of germs and infections within the household.”

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