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By Dominique Madden
Contributing Reporter 

Wearing Shoes in the Home; Does it Brings The Outside In


April 20, 2023

Leaving your shoes at the door keeps you from bringing the outside to the inside of your house

When asked, Should people where shoes in your home, there are very different answers. Some are; I don't want anyone wearing shoes in my house that have been in public toilets and goodness knows where, yuck! We have a shoe rack by the front door for guests to put their shoes on,' a woman responded.

'Imagine all the things we are stepping on outside everyday. I don't want that brought into my house. Ew!,' another answered.

'I grew up in a Scandinavian family and you NEVER wear your shoes into someone's house. I take my shoes off whenever I enter anyone's home to this day, even if they say I can leave them on. Think about are dirty even if they look clean,' a third commented.

A lot of users were firm in their 'no shoes in the house' rule saying it keeps dirt and grime out from being brought inside

A lot of users were firm in their 'no shoes in the house' rule saying it keeps dirt and grime out from being brought inside

According to Dr Jonathan Sexton you should consider asking your guests to take their shoes off at the door.

He said it is not only cleaner but studies show that footwear is home to many bacteria, some of which are a health threat if consumed in large amounts - especially for young children.

'For a healthy adult, it's not too big of an issue. I'd be more worried about a child crawling around on the floor,' Dr. Sexton, who is an environmental microbiologist and research specialist based at the University of Arizona, told Live Science.

Studies have found 'hundreds of thousands of bacteria per square inch', including fecal matter, which can cause dangerous infection or illnesses, on the bottom of shoes.

Shoes can be contaminated outdoors, and then bring germs indoors where they dwell on the floors and surfaces.

Top five reasons to take your shoes off before going in the house

1. Shoe soles are dirtier than toilet seats: According to Dr. Jonathan Sexton, a research assistant at the University of Arizona's College of Public Health, toilet seats generally have about 1,000 bacteria or less, while the soles of shoes typically play hosts to millions.

2. Feces are present on almost 100 per cent of shoes: A University of Houston study found that coliforms, which are universally present in feces, are found on 96 per cent of shoe soles. What's more, 39 percent contain C.diff, an antibiotic-resistant bacteria that causes diarrhea, and 27 percent contain E. coli.

3. Bacteria lives on shoes longer than almost anywhere else: After thorough researching, the University of Arizona found that bacteria live a very long time on shoes - longer than in most other places. They speculate the reason is because there is a continuous build up of new bacteria that feeds the growth of the existing bacteria.

4. There's s 90 per cent chance whatever is on your shoes will transfer to the floor of your house: Numerous tests have shown that bacteria, fungus and viruses present on the bottom of your shoes don't wear off the more you walk. They cling to shoe soles and eventually end up on the tile, wood and carpet floors of your house.

5. Despite what you think about building up your immunity, you're wrong when it comes to shoe bacteria: Exposure to some types of bacteria is actually a good thing as it builds up the body's immunity and makes you stronger. However, most of the bacteria present on shoes is from fecal matter, and the truth is that most of it can be pretty harmful to your health.


He said: 'The exposure makes the poison. So if you're not exposed to it, you're not going to get sick from it.'

The only possible cause of this happening would be if the bacteria were lifted into the air we breathe, such as by a draft from a window.

Not only are youngsters playing on the floor at risk - but people who have lower immune systems.

'In a person who is at risk for infections - usually someone recently hospitalized - attention to good household cleaning can be important,' Professor Kevin Garey from the University of Houston College of Pharmacy told Live Science.

The bacteria found on the soles of our shoes do not pose an immediate risk however, if you have a small child, or are more prone to infection, 'it would be a good idea to take your outdoor shoes off when you enter your home,' Dr. Garey said.

'For most healthy persons, however, you can make the decision as much based on preference and habit, as potential health concern.

Everyone has their own reasons why or why not to remove your shoes when entering your home. Just to 'be safe, have a back up in-door pair of shoes to slip into once you enter your home. A pair of house shoes will do the trick.

Talk to your doctor on your next visit, if you want to understand more about the pros and cons of wearing your shoes in your home


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