Hey friends - so...the Daily News recently ran an article about the (lack of) cleanliness of computer keyboards in the work place. I thought that the article was going to address the obvious; ya know, that people just don't wash their hands enough...that the warm energy generated by the computer creates the perfect place for all kinds of germs and bacteria to grow...but this was not the case. The article talked more about a problem that I wasn't really expecting...
Nearly everyone eats at their desk at one time or another. There are the people that are so busy, they do it every day. Then there's the occasional snacker and the people that just eat the birthday cake on that special occasion. Although it seems perfectly harmless, in each case, there's always the possibility of leaving some crumbs behind...
Once you leave for the evening, there may be someone else who wants a snack...and just a tiny crumb stuck between your number "2"and "w" key will hit the spot. When you're gone for the day, mice will come out to play, and when they do, they'll leave you something in return...droppings and urine - which pose serious health risks. Mouse droppings can easily fall between the spaces on the keyboard - just like the crumbs the mice are after.
The Daily News article states that workers who fail to keep their desk area clean and crumb free can get sick simply by typing on a pooped-on keyboard and then picking up a sandwich or piece of fruit with their unwashed hands. Scientists swabbed keyboards in a London office and found traces of E. coli, coliforms, and enterobacteria, which all cause food poisoning. It's been said that our keyboards are dirtier than the average toilet seat. How scary is that?
You can take some very simple precautions to keep your space clean and healthy:
- Be sure to clean your work area when you leave at night using antibacterial surface cleanser. Wipe down your key board and your phone and the surface of your desk.
- Make sure you do not leave food in or around your desk that is not properly sealed.
- Take the trash out nightly - especially it contains left overs.
- And of course, wash your hands throughout the day.