Gross, isn’t it? According to a recent study by Standford University, your smartphone is most likely filthier than a public toilet seat-Yet, you put your digital sidekick up to your face everyday without flinching or giving it a second thought. So, unless you sanitize your device regularly, you may be in for a rude awakening.

Several studies over the last few years have shown cellphones harbor one of the most active breeding grounds for germs that you’ll come in contact with on a day-to-day basis. Forget doorknobs, grocery baskets and the bottom on your shoes – Public enemy number one is sitting in your pocket, most likely increasing its numbers of pathogens at this very moment. One recent study* even found that “1-in-6 cellphones are contaminated with fecal matter.” That’s right. Poop – On your phone.

A Breeding Ground For Germs

Why? The warmth of a smartphone’s interior is a germ-infested breeding ground and is a perfect environment for those pathogens as they’re kept cozy in our pockets or purses. Also, when is the last time you went somewhere without your phone? If you’re like most people, it’s with you from the minute you get up to the moment you call it a night. Even then, it’s still by your side recharging its battery. Think about that for a second. It goes with you to work, to eat…to the bathroom – Giving germs plenty of chances to hitch a ride.

Your iPhone or Droid, especially its display, is a germ magnet, collecting newcomers every time you touch something and then handle your phone, easily transferring them to your fingertips. So, every time you place your device next to your mouth you’re risking adding millions of germs to your face. Add to that a study from the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine in 2010 that said the average handset carries 18 times more potentially harmful germs than a flush handle on a men’s public toilet. Yikes.

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