Where germs lurk

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When it’s visible we’re quick to wipe, wash and scrub it away. But the truth is more than 99 per cent of dirt is invisible, odourless and unnoticed.

Find love now! Click here. While we clean the obvious places such as our baths and toilets with rigour few of us pay much attention to more apparently blameless items in our homes – computers, mattresses, rugs and curtains.

Yet countless studies show that places and objects we assume to be clean are often breeding grounds for potentially harmful bacteria and parasites.

An investigation by scientists at St Bartholomew’s Hospital in London recently found a pillow – far from being a harmless support for a tired head at the end of the day – is full of dust mites, allergens and bacteria.

Fact is that the average home contains more bacteria than there are stars in the galaxy and several kilos of human skin cells, dust mites, spores, eggs and the faeces of a dozen species of parasitical insects and crustaceans.

Even a spotless house is, in microbial terms, as dirty as the average farmyard.

The good news is that most of this dirt is harmless. Indeed, there’s evidence to show it may, in fact, be a good thing. The argument is that if we make life too sterile, especially for children, our bodies won’t develop efficient immune systems at an early age.

Read YOU 11 August 2011 to find out where most of the dirt in your home is hidden.

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