36 thoughts on “Hygiene In The Head”

  1. Fascinating; Google self-completes (to its first option) on “is urine sterile” with just the first 4 characters (i-s-space-u). Not sure if that says more about google or… something else.

          1. Fair enough, your concern is only about ill effects, to yourself, of not washing your hands after urinating.
            I can see few PRACTICAL reasons.
            Hypothetically, if one has, say herpes in that region, it would be a good idea to wash to keep it out of ones other regions (eyes, nose, mouth). Maybe there are other ailments with a similar reason to keep it localized via washing.

            A different concern is urinating and not washing and letting that be known to ones social circle, work mates, etc.

          2. You do realize that the article was about people taking a joke as a literal statement right?

            There is a line of thought about how over cleanliness is hurting our immune systems too. Something to think about…

  2. wiping your butt .. and offering a hand to shake .. Urine is non-toxic, although it contains urea and other substances which can be toxic.

    “Urine is not sterile, and neither is the rest of you”

    “Let’s say you find yourself lying at the bottom of a ravine with a dirt-filled gash in your leg. According to the Internet, the first thing you want to do is pee on your wound. After all, the common wisdom holds, urine is sterile.

    Wrong again, Internet.

    Urine is not sterile, even before it comes out of you and gets contaminated by your skin. Bacteria are present at low levels in the urine of healthy people not suffering from a urinary tract infection, Evann Hilt of Loyola University of Chicago reported May 18 at a conference of the American Society for Microbiology. Now, Hilt and her colleagues are figuring out what bacteria make up the normal bladder community and whether a change in that community might trigger urinary problems.”

    https://www.sciencenews.org/blog/gory-details/urine-not-sterile-and-neither-rest-you

    1. Hah, good joke about the internet. Not as funny as the tv person’s joke but it was ok enough. Question though, why do you pee on your hands?

      The most likely source of the baddies getting on your hand is by touching things in the bathroom, like a door knob or the flusher. In public, you want to avoid the air blowers.

      Also, don’t pee on yourself.

      1. I think it was in basic training where we were taught not to pee on our hands… Heard it was a leadership development course in the marines… 😉

  3. I think the point may be that it isn’t what’s in the urine that you want to wash off of your hands — or rather, that you want other people to wash off their hands before they shake your hand or handle your food.

  4. “Didn’t your mother teach you to wash your hands after you pee?”

    “My father taught me not to pee on my hands.”

    ===
    My hands get a bit dirty at work–quite ordinary dirt, not auto shop grease or garbage filth–so if anything, I wash before I handle my privates.

    But water only–I refuse to teach the local bacteria to resist antibiotics by using the triclosan concoction in the dispensers.

    I have not noticed any adverse effects.

    ===
    My own pee should be sterile, but I don’t remotely trust public sterility.

  5. Really it’s not about a trace of urine (which is certainly more sterile than pond water – so go ahead and flush that dirty wound), more about what else might be in your shorts ( and elsewehere) that your hand has just touched. Does everyone on here change their underwear every day? (that’s a rhetorical question, please don’t answer!)

    There is a reason that surgeons are so anal about hand-washing.

    1. I am all in favor of surgeons washing their hands before opening up living bodies. Not sure it’s relevant to this discussion.

      I think that, societally, we’ve become overobsessed with Purex and handwashing, and are probably creating superbugs.

  6. As a long-time EMT, I saw more than one moron (usually a druggie) peeing on himself (usually at the hospital), and sometimes my clothing if I didn’t get out of the way fast enough, but I wasn’t concerned about the sterility of the urine; I was concerned with the obvious NON-sterility of what it came out of. Yecch. So I ran around the rest of the night with a wet spot on my pants/shirt where I’d spot-washed the area.

    (And yes, women can be druggies and pee themselves, but due to anatomy it’s not as obvious and the pee doesn’t project.)

  7. When we collect urine for a urine culture or even just a urinalysis we ask patients to catch it mid-stream because the first urine that comes out is not sterile. But we touch our genitalia so it seems reasonable to wash our hands after peeing. But, it’s also fair to note that only a percentage of guys wash their hands after peeing and we shake hands all the time — and then few wash their hands before peeing. So, if an STD was particularly infectious, I would imagine that STDs should be more prevalent than it is.

    1. Actually I typically wash before peeing and not afterwards.
      But that’s just me I guess.

      I also wash before either eating or handling food.

  8. Don’t miss the third paragraph of the following:

    According to epidemiologist Richard T. Ellison III, it doesn’t matter what you do in the bathroom when it comes to keeping your hands clean. “The rationale is that when toileting, it’s possible to have fecal material and fecal bacteria get onto your hands,” Ellison told Dollar Shave Club. “So it’s wisest to always wash with soap and water even after urinating. Neither plain water nor alcohol hand sanitizers are effective at removing fecal material or killing bacteria in fecal material.”

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, handwashing can prevent various illnesses and infections. Ellison added that it can also keep us from coming in contact with E. Coli and hepatitis.

    This is especially important for men to bear in mind because of perianal sweat. This type of sweat forms around the perianal area, which is the patch of skin outside the rectum. It can then spread to one’s underwear and to other parts of the body like the penis. Biology professor Pat Fidopiastis explained, “The point is that simply touching the penis in an effort to direct your urine flow can be more than enough to transfer harmful microbes to your hands, and then on to the pretzels sitting in bowl on the bar.”

    That was from the first link google returned when I googled the question. https://hellogiggles.com/lifestyle/health-fitness/really-need-wash-hands-pee/

    1. Points to the importance of regular bathing and considering your recent activities in deciding how clean you think you are.

      What bathrooms need are toe hooks on doors, then only our shoes are covered in bacteria. If you wash your hands but then touch a door…

  9. “Penis and Uranus” sounds like the title of a Roman fairy tale…

    When I read articles like this (and attendant comment sections) I wonder about the populations of extremely grubby and/or extremely squeamish people. If urine and feces were as dangerous as all that, we’d all be dead (or a whole lot more squeamish). Heck, a popular oral sex position (the one with a numerical nickname) puts your nostrils right next to the pretty girl’s anus (especially if you’ve got a great big honker like mine!). Any of us ever handled a baby? I used to be a sewer worker, and I never got sick (much less croaked from E. coli).

    On another blog I sometimes read there was a discussion of underwear changing, and there were some women claiming because they were inactive and didn’t sweat, they didn’t need to change their underwear. Well, I’ve been around (and close to) women for about 50 years. You show me a woman doesn’t need to change her dainty underthings at least once a day and I’ll show you a plastic mannequin. People are funny.

    1. Ok, I want to take you seriously, but all I can think about is you holding a baby after 69-ing in the sewer.
      Kidding, kidding!

  10. I saw Bear Grylls drink his own urine once. Apparently that’s preferable to drinking seawater if you’re stranded on a raft.

  11. Reminds me of an old ‘Star Trek’ cartoon. Kirk, an Andorian, and Spock are standing at the urinals in the little aliens’ room. The Andorian finishes his business and heads out the door. Kirk speaks —

    Kirk: At Starfleet, they teach us to wash our hands after urinating.

    Andorian: On Andor, we are taught to conserve water and sanitary supplies.

    Spock finishes and stops at the door to say —

    Spock: At the Vulcan Science Academy, they teach us not to pee on our hands. (Exits)

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