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Your keyboard is disgusting!

sroehrl profile image neoan ・1 min read

In 2016 research revealed that the average computer keyboard not only has hundreds of times more bacteria than a toilet, but also disturbingly aggressive bacteria.

Interesting facts

Now, underestimating our smartphone's and keyboard's potential to cause illness is one thing. But not without being amazed by some findings:

Statistically, women's office keyboards are dirtier than men's. Unfortunately, the study by the University of Arizona did not provide any guesses of why. It is, however, an interesting finding.

Hospital keyboards are most critical. It makes sense, but we rarely think about it: A study at the Chicago Memorial Hospital found two deadly and drug resistant types of bacteria prone to sticking to the hospital's keyboards. Something that doesn't affect our personal work environment, but certainly something I will have in mind at the next doctor visit.

What to do?

Well, it is suggested to wash your hands prior and after using a keyboard.
As for the cleaning: make sure you clean between the keys! Unplug your keyboard and turn it around to get rid of debris. Then, with a qtip and alcohol, carefully clean between the keys. Use a damp (not wet!) cloth with cleaner to go about the surface of your keyboard.

With mechanical keyboards, you normally can remove the caps easily.

Discussion

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andreidascalu profile image
Andrei Dascalu

Just random thoughts:

  • hospital stuff tends to have resistant bacteriaxon just about anything and the number of types just increases with the use of strong antibacterian cleaners.
  • as a tech guy I am somewhat fond of having reasonably clean devices. I am far from obsessed but I clean my devices more carefully than most of my other home stuff, kitchen utensils included. When I clean my laptop I use dedicated things like antibacterian wet wipes, antistatic for the screen, compressed air, etc. My wife, who is the cleaning guardian of the house, doesn't care as much for her laptop. My Mac pro was taken to Apple service with the famous keyboard issues of newer models, occasion on which they also remarked how dirty my keyboard is. It did have non dirt related issues, though if my reasonably cleaned keyboard had such an impressive amount of dirt that prompted Apple care guys to say it out loud, I shudder to think about my wife's laptop.
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moopet profile image
Ben Sinclair

Statistically, women's office keyboards are dirtier than men's. Unfortunately, the study by the University of Arizona did not provide any guesses of why.

If you take any two groups out of anything, one is going to have a bigger result than the other. The odds on them being equal are remote.

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sroehrl profile image
neoan Author

True. But the research indicated that shared keyboards tend to be more infested. There might be an explanation when looking into the likelihood of shared keyboards men vs. women. Or maybe there is particular behavior (like eating at the desk) that is more prevalent in a particular gender. Whatever the case, I wondered.