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If You Recently Used Self-Service Checkout, Wash Your Hands Immediately

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Shopping became a lot more convenient with the addition of the self-service checkout lines, allowing customers to scan and bag their own items, but according to a recent report, it comes with a pretty unpleasant downside - feces.

The Liverpool School of Tropical Medicine in the UK did an experiment in which they swabbed 19 things that people touch everyday, everything from doorknobs to handrails to keyboards. After analyzing all the swabs in a lab, they saw many had "high bacterial loads," but the most dangerous was the self-service kiosks.

Dr. Adam Roberts told the Daily Mail that the checkouts had five types of bacteria that can cause diseases, and among them was enterococcus, a bacteria found in feces. Per Dr. Roberts, "We live in a bacterial world — bacteria and microbes are everywhere, and we come into contact with them all day, every day."

Eftpos Machine at Self Checkout

Photo: Getty Images

Other strains of bacteria discovered on items were E. coli and Klebsiella, both of which can cause diarrhea, fever, stomach cramps and more, and they can be especially dangerous for people with vulnerable immune systems.

The experts recommend washing your hands after using the bathroom, before eating, and certainly any time you use a self-service checkout too.