Study took swab samples from 90 offices across the US..
Male-only workplaces contain a significantly higher number of bacteria than mixed or female-only workplaces according to a newly-released study from the US.
Researchers visited various workplaces occupied by men and women in New York, San Francisco and Tucson, Arizona and took swab samples from the 90 offices they visited to test for bacteria. The swab samples resulted in a total of 500 different types of bacteria being uncovered with the majority of the bacteria originating from the skin, nose, ears and intestinal cavities of the employees in the workplaces tested.
The study revealed that the highest concentration of the bugs was found on office furniture and equipment especially chairs and telephones with lesser amounts of bacteria discovered on keyboards, computer mice and desktops. It was also found that San Francisco had a slightly lower bacteria detection rate than the other two cities but the researchers were unable to say why this was the case.
Dr Scott Kelly of San Diego State University who headed the research project said that the most significant finding was the diversity in results between male and female workplaces. He added that the research team could only conclude that the reason for this was a significantly different level of personal hygiene between men and women generally.
The online journal Public Library of Science ONE published the findings of the report and revealed why the researchers believed there was such a disparity in evidence between the genders with regard to their hygiene:
“Men are known to wash their hands and brush their teeth less frequently than women, and are commonly perceived to have a more slovenly nature.”
Whatever the perceptions, the results of the study don’t lie and in order to prevent bugs speading around the place of work, perhaps more men should aspire to the personal hygiene standards demonstrated by their female colleagues!