If you’re a toilet texter or enjoy playing Candy Crush while spending a penny, you could be putting your health at risk.
It’s estimated that around three quarters of people use their phones while sitting on the toilet.
But now a GP has warned people against taking their phones to the bathroom, as they can end up with all manner of unwanted bacteria on them.
Yup, we’re talking about poo.
Dr Anchita Karmakar told SBS: “There are water and air particles that harbour in the little creases of the phone. And phone covers and cases are usually made out of rubber, which is a warm and comfortable harbouring ground for bacteria.”
She added that, later on, people give their kids their phones to play with and the bacteria transmits to them too.
“Parents often wonder where their children got an illness or infection. It could be from a variety of places and could actually be from your phone,” she added.
Dr Karmakar said that if you play with your phone while on the toilet, you’re exposing yourself to lots of germs that could make you ill.
“When you’re flushing or defecating, bacteria will be in the air particles which could attach to your phone,” she explained.
A previous study from London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine found that one in six mobile phones in Britain was contaminated with faecal matter.
In the study, 16% of phones were found to harbour E. coli, which is associated with stomach upsets and has been implicated in serious cases of food poisoning.
If you’re fretting that your phone could have you bedridden for days, Dr Helen Webberley, a GP for Oxford Online Pharmacy, says not to worry too much.
Speaking to The Huffington Post UK, she revealed that while using your phone on the loo isn’t a particularly hygienic habit, the chances of coming into contact with harmful bacteria is “unlikely”.
“Phones aside, public toilets are a breeding ground for all sorts of germs,” she added. “Make sure you wash your hands thoroughly, try not to touch anything unnecessarily and, if the facilities seem particularly dirty, avoid them altogether.”