Wednesday, September 17, 2014

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For Some Personal Hygiene Products, Sharing is Not Caring

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You might be surprised to find that there are certain personal hygiene products that you are never supposed to share. NY1's Jill Urban filed the following report.

There's nothing like going away for a few days, only to get there and realize you forgot a few essentials. Before you borrow from a friend or loved one, though, Sascha de Gersdorff of Women's Health Magazine outlined a few hygiene products you should never borrow, like razors.

"Do not share your razors," de Gersdorff says. "Now, all sorts of case studies have found that razors can increase the risk for transmission for Hepatitis B, C, even HIV. So this is something you really, really want to keep to yourself."

Sharing them can also increase the risk for other viral and fungal infections.

Speaking of fungal infections, sharing nail clippers is another no-no. You may see no harm in borrowing a friend's clippers for a quick mani, but studies have shown they can transmit fungus. If you must, make sure it's been well-cleaned with an alcohol based solution.

Next is bars of soap.

"To some extent, a bar of soap is self-cleaning. However, it doesn't clean itself from everything," de Gersdorff says. "So a study at the University of Florida found that people who shared barred soap had more recurring MRSA infections. That's a really dangerous type of staph infection. You don't want to get that. So if you must share soap in the shower, use liquid soap."

Antiperspirant is another one. Unlike soap, it's not self-cleaning, so any bacteria or germs attached to skin and hair particles can easily be transferred from one pit to another.

We all know that we're not supposed to share toothbrushes, but sometimes, if we are in a bind, you might think it's OK to use the toothbrush of someone you love. You really shouldn't, though. A toothbrush can transmit blood-borne infections, especially if that person had bleeding gums or a cut in his or her mouth. And also, think about all the food particles that are on there. It's pretty gross. So if you need a toothbrush, you really should wait and get to a drug store to get your own.

Lastly, whether it's in a bathroom or at the pool, keep your towels to yourself.

"The CDC shows that sharing wet towels especially can lead to the transmission of everything from pink eye to gonorrhea," de Gersdorff says.

So even though our parents taught to share, some things should really be kept to ourselves.

For more tips, go to womenshealth.com.

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