October 19, 2015
We all love a harrowing tale or two at Halloween but ‘nightmare with office bugs’ doesn’t want to be one of them! Germs are not a trick, they’re certainly not a treat. Here are some to be aware of in the office this winter…
Germs, and we’re talking bad bacteria, vicious viruses and morbid microorganisms, are everywhere and they like to spread themselves about. 99% of germs can’t harm us but the other 1% could cause us a fright! And they’re spread so easily from body fluids, air droplets and shared surfaces, which is why there are so many germ hot spots in and around the office.
Influenza, commonly known as the Flu, is an infectious virus easily spread amongst colleagues in the office through coughs and sneezes. The virus can survive up to 24 hours on hard surfaces and several hours as droplets in the air, however, it only lives for about 15 minutes on tissue.
So the slogan “Catch it. Bin it. Kill it” really is a successful way of preventing flu spreading.
Flu differs from the common cold presenting more severe symptoms than a few sniffles. For most of us, we’ll have a temperature, chesty cough, suffer from tiredness and weakness – perhaps with symptoms of a cold as well. However for more health vulnerable people its affects can be devastatingly serious.
Herpes is a horror of a virus! You unknowingly catch it, it lays dormant in the nerve tissues on your face and then later the virus reawakens to produce swollen and itchy cold sores around your mouth. The sufferer may also have other symptoms such as sore throat, fever and inflamed glands.
The HSV-1 virus causing oral herpes can survive for 2 hours on the skin, 3 hours on cloth and up to 4 hours on plastics. The best prevention of the spread of cold sores is no contact and thorough hand washing.
E Coli, Salmonella, Clostridium Difficile, Norovirus, Rotavirus, Campylobacter… take you pick from these scary stomach bugs, all of which can be found lurking in and around the office. Norovirus, also known as the ‘winter vomiting bug’ is the most common stomach bug in the UK and it isn’t fussy about its victims, you can be anyone of any age (and in fact you can catch it at any time of year too, not just in winter).
It’s highly contagious and there’s no cure so you just have to let it run its nasty course. Oh, and if you get norovirus, don’t go and spread it around the office – it’s a bona fide reason for a sick day!
Meticillin-Resistant Staphylococcus Aureus, otherwise known as MRSA is a bacteria superbug and one which you don’t want to come up against.
The bacteria is resistant to many widely used antibiotics and it is incredibly infectious, spreading through skin-to-skin contact and via contaminated objects such as door handles and towels – the bacteria can live for weeks on surfaces if not cleaned.
If MRSA infects the skin you’ll suffer from outbreaks of sore boils or it can develop into cellulitis in the deeper skin tissue but it’s the MRSA bacteria that work its way into the bloodstream which can cause serious, even life-threatening invasive infections such as blood poisoning and pneumonia.
So if this has been a scary awakening to the chilling germs loitering around the office this winter then you’d better pack some pocket tissues, wash your hands regularly and disinfect heavily used items on your desk to keep the bugs at bay.
For more information on our commercial cleaning services in London please contact us on 0203 174 1723 for a free, no-obligation quote. We’d be delighted to hear from you to explore with you how we might be able to help you and your business.