Everyone loves a shower in the morning, but no one wants to get showered with bacteria. If you havenít cleaned your showerhead recently, though, this is what may be happening. A study at the University of Colorado at Boulder found that 30 percent of showerheads tested positive for Mycobacterium avium, a germ that can cause lung infections, and for other various bacteria and fungi. Since some microbes may be resistant to chlorine, the best way to clean a showerhead is to soak it in a diluted vinegar solution and then scrub the deposits away with an old toothbrush. Plastic showerheads are more prone to bacterial buildup than metal ones, so people with compromised immune systems are advised to consider switching if necessary.
A 2008 experiment by a researcher in England found that some computer keyboards harbor five times as many bacteria than the average toilet seatóbacteria including methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA), E. coli, and staph. The Centers for Disease Control blamed computer-equipment contamination for a 2007 norovirus outbreak that affected more than 100 people at a Washington, D.C., elementary school. Even private computers used at home arenít immune to infection, considering that people are more likely to clean, take out trash, prepare food, handle pets, or use the bathroom without washing their hands when theyíre at home. A good scrub after typing is the best way to avoid getting sick, but cleaning the keyboard is another good idea. First, eliminate dirt and crumbs using a vacuum cleaner or compressed-air canister, and then use a solution of diluted dishwashing detergent or isopropyl alcohol to swab down the keys with cotton balls or cotton swabs. (Make sure you disconnect the keyboard first.) While youíre at it, you might as well give the same treatment to your mouse, as well as your TVís remote control.