The reason you should take off your shoes before entering your home

In many corners of the world is mandatory to take off your shoes when you enter the house. In other countries, asking the guest to take off his shoes when he enters in your house is an unpolite gesture.

This practice, to take off your shoes is more and more popular, not just because it offers comfort to the feet, but also to keep away the bacteria and dirt that we wear on the shoes.

Arizona University specialists conducted a study led by microblogist Dr. Charles Gerba, in collaboration with researcher Jonathan Sexton, examining microbes on shoes and analyzing what dangers can arise if we enter into the house with the shoes on.

The whole experiment consisted of three stages. First, researchers analyzed 26 shoes that were worn for three months, which found on average 421,000 bacteria, among the most dangerous being Escherichia coli, responsible for digestive infections, diarrhea and even meningitis, Klebsiella pneumoniae, which can cause urinary infections, pneumonia or septicemia, or Serratia ficaria, and this cause urinary and respiratory disorders.

All these bacteria are picked up from the sidewalks, restaurants, public toilets, or other dirty places, can survive on shoes for days or even weeks and become a threat to our health if they contaminate personal space.

In a second stage of the study, the two specialists wanted to see how the bacteria on the footwear could contaminate other surfaces. So they volunteered to walk on several clean sandstone tiles, taking one step on each piece of sandstone tiles. The conclusion? Bacterial transfer was done in more than 90% of cases. Moreover, according to the authors of the study, the shoes proved to be a good place for the development of these microorganisms, even better than the toilet.

The next step was to determine if washing the shoe can “save” the situation in any way. 10 pairs of shoes were worn by 10 volunteers, after which they were cleaned with cold water and laundry detergent. The approach proved to be extremely effective, given that the bacteria on the shoe dropped 99 percent. Another way to ensure the highest standard of hygiene in the home and a healthy living environment is to regularly clean the floor with steam appliances and wash the carpets.