Tips to avoid catching a cold from your mobile phone
Bathroom door handles and shopping trolleys are not the only places germs lurk, your mobile phone could be an effective germ haven too. Your phone comes into contact with hands, yours and potentially others, many times, over the course of the day, so it is likely to harbour plenty of germs.
Airborne cough or sneeze droplets from someone who is sick, may also settle on your mobile. Germs that cause the common cold can survive for up to three hours on objects such as phones,1 which is a health hazard; if you handle a contaminated mobile phone that is harbouring cold‐causing germs, then touch your mouth, nose or eyes, or breathe them in, you could be at risk of illness.
With a little care you can help ensure a cleaner phone and reduce the risk of illness this cold and flu season. Here are our top tips for keeping your mobile free of germs:
- Regularly wipe down your mobile’s surface, every day if possible – To keep your mobile phone as germ‐free as possible, disinfect the surface on a regular basis. It is best to check with your phone manufacturer on how to safely do this without damaging your mobile. This also applies to tablets and laptops. Many companies now offer specialised products to clean and sanitise electronics.
- Go hands‐free – To limit exposure to phones laden with germs and phone‐to‐face contact, consider using a hands‐free device whenever possible.
- Avoid sharing your mobile phone – Avoid lending your phone to other people, especially if you know they are sick. If you must share it, ensure that you disinfect its surface afterwards.
- Wash your hands regularly – The best way to avoid a common cold is to wash your hands thoroughly and frequently over the course of the day, including before and after using your phone. Ensure you use soap and water or an alcohol‐based sanitiser, and teach your children to do the same.