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post #1 of 1 (permalink) Old Aug 2nd, 2006, 10:55 PM Thread Starter
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Great Britain: Cell Phones Major Health Hazard

Wash your hands, caller. Your mobile's dirtier than you think
BY FIONA MACRAE, Daily Mail

23:42pm 1st August 2006


Your mobile phone could be a major health hazard, research shows.

The phones, an essential part of everyday life for 55million Britons, are crawling with potentially lethal bacteria.

With tens of thousands of microbes living on each square inch, they harbour more bacteria than a lavatory seat, the sole of a shoe or a door handle. Microbiologists say the combination of constant handling and the heat generated by the phones creates a prime breeding ground for all sorts of bugs that are normally found on our skin.

They include Staphylococcus aureus, which can cause illnesses from pimples and boils to pneumonia and meningitis and is a close relative of the superbug MRSA.

Joanna Verran, professor of microbiology at Manchester Metropolitan University, said: "Mobile phones are stored in bags or pockets, are handled frequently and held close to the face.

"In other words, they come into contact with more parts of our body and a wider range of bacteria than toilet seats. The phones contained more skin bacteria than any other object. This could be due to the fact that this type of bacteria increase in high temperatures and our phones are perfect for breeding these germs as they are kept warm and cosy in pockets, handbags and briefcases."

Mobile firm Dial-a-Phone advised owners to use anti-bacterial wipes to keep their handsets germ-free.
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