It feels like a timeless debate. Which way to hang toilet paper? And it seems everyone has their say on this one!
If everyone living in your household agrees to one way, then count your blessings. Go ahead and have a ‘we hang our toilet paper the same way’ celebration.
But hang on. Just before you do — cross your fingers that you are not only agreeing on how to hang it — but have chosen to do it the ‘right’ way, too. That’s right folks. Science shows there is indeed a better way to execute this seemingly meaningless task.
There are essentially two ways one can hang toilet paper: over, as depicted in the image on the left, or under, as shown on the right.
Which way do you do it?
Well, here is the correct way:
Yes, it would appear ‘over’ would be the preferred method.
The conclusion stems from a study from the University of Colorado, which showed that hanging your toilet paper “under” increases the possibility of food-poisoning bacteria spreading from bathrooms to other areas.
Toilets are, needless to say, great hubs for bacteria.
“Using a high-tech genetic sequencing tool, researchers identified 19 groups of bacteria on the doors, floors, faucet handles, soap dispensers, and toilets of 12 public restrooms in Colorado — six men’s restrooms and six women’s restrooms. Many of the bacteria strains identified could be transmitted by touching contaminated surfaces,” the study read.
E-coli is particularly commonly found in public restrooms and can cause food poisoning.
But what difference does how the toilet paper is hung make?
Well, when toilet paper is placed ‘over’, you only touch the paper. as you unroll it.
When it’s hung ‘under’, on the other hand, there’s a greater chance that your fingers will touch the wall or other areas of the bacteria-filled bathroom.
Washing You Hands!
Of course, the best way to avoid all bacteria — toilet paper placed over or under — is to thoroughly wash your hands.
Always properly wash your hands after using the bathroom, and this is especially important after using a public restroom. One cool trick I recently heard is to sing the “Happy Birthday” song twice as you scrub your hands with soap and warm water.
It might seem like a long time (yes, I just tried it in my head) but remember that most illnesses are spread due to improper hand-washing. So why take the chance?
From now on it’s definitely two takes of Happy Birthday for me!
There you have it folks — the debate put to rest. I’m happy to say I’d been hanging my toilet paper this way all my life, so I will continue to do so moving forward. Share this news with your family and friends to inform them of the proper way to hang their toilet paper, too.