Can You Get STD From Toilet Water Splashing?

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) are infections or diseases that get contracted through sexual contact. They generally occur via anal, oral, or vaginal sex. However, sometimes, intimate physical contact can result in STDs. Perhaps this gives enough reasons for most persons to worry and believe that getting into contact with toilet seats can make them catch STDs. But can you get STD from toilet water splashing on your butt as you use the toilet?

If you’re germ-phobic, it’s scary to imagine the creepy germs or bacteria lurking on the faucet handles or toilet seats getting into contact with your body. You most likely won’t enjoy spending more time in the washroom at your workplace, hotel, gas station, or restaurant. And in case you found yourself in such nerve-wracking situations, you’d prefer to use your elbow to push the washroom door to open it and crouch precariously over the toilet’s seat than allowing your skin to come into contact with the seat. Not to mention, you’d also prefer using your shoe to flush the toilet.

But the good news is that it’s just mythical that STDs can get passed from person to person due to coming into contact with a toilet seat. Thus, it’s doubtful to get infected in this manner. So don’t fret! But, let’s go ahead and look at…

Evidence Of STDs And How They Get Spread

Viruses, parasites, and even bacteria can all cause sexually transmitted diseases. For instance, bacterial sexually transmitted diseases include gonorrheasyphilis, and chlamydia. Viral-caused STDs include Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) (which causes genital warts), herpes simplex, and hepatitis B. Parasitic sexually transmitted diseases include trichomoniasis and public lice. 

Each form of sexually transmitted infection spreads uniquely. Also, note that bacterial STIs dwell in the mucous membranes (for example, in the vaginal, mouth, rectum, and penis mucous membranes) and often get transmitted when there is person-to-person contact with someone who has infected mucosal membranes. 

On the other hand, viruses have the potential to live outside the mucosal membranes. Thus, viruses dwell inside your porous skin around the genitals. However, HIV and Hepatitis viruses don’t readily penetrate through unbroken skin. Lastly, parasites often get transmitted via sexual intercourse, but they can also spread via exposure to infected people’s bed linens, towels, or clothing.

Keep in mind that parasitic STIs are the only form of sexually transmitted infections that seems to have a considerable risk of getting spread from person to person through public toilet seats. Research suggests that, as much as trichomoniasis gets passed through sexual contact, it has the potential to get contracted from touching moist or damp objects like toilet seats. 

But, it’s only possible if your genital parts get into close contact with the moist or damp object. Luckily, toilet seats don’t offer ideal environmental conditions for parasites to survive or reproduce. So, don’t worry! 

Facts That Oppose Such Health Claims

So, is it possible to contract bacterial sexually transmitted infections once sited on a toilet seat at restaurants, offices, or gas stations? The answer is no! That shouldn’t give you sleepless nights at all! 

Of course, it’s highly impossible to get infected with bacterial STIs in such a way because of the harsh environmental conditions that won’t support their survival. As stated earlier, the bacterial STIs would only live and reproduce in the moist or dump environments of the mucosal membranes. Meanwhile, Viral STIs quickly die when outside the human body.  

So, it’s hard for them to survive on the toilet seats. Not to mention, for the scenario of HIV, any left viruses on the toilet seat wouldn’t reach your circulation system except if they got exposed to an opening wound in your body. However, it’s implausible to happen!

To get infected with a sexually transmitted disease from a toilet seat, a “perfect situation” must occur regardless of its cleanness or hygiene status. You have to sit on the contaminated toilet seat just a few seconds after the infected person deposits the virus on the seat before they leave the toilet. 

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Also, note that the deposited virus must survive outside the infected person’s body for a while after being deposited on the toilet seat. Lastly, for transmission to occur, you must sit at the exact position on the toilet seat where the virus is attached. Indeed, it’s a big myth that such events happen quickly and accurately. It’s nearly impossible!

So, since such a situation is so rare, the United States Government’s Centers responsible for containment and prevention of diseases suggest that sexually transmitted diseases such as HPV, HIV, and syphilis can’t get spread through toilet seats. Moreso, they claim that public lice infections from contaminated toilet seats are scarce scenarios since lice can’t survive under an unwarm toilet seat environment and are unable to move or walk on the smooth toilet surface. 

The National Institute Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which deals with body allergies and infections, claims that chances for the spread of genital warts virus rarely gets transmitted via objects like hot tubs or toilet seats.

What Precautions Can You Take To Avoid Bacterial Infections?

Despite the lower chances of contracting sexually transmitted diseases due to splashing water from your toilet bowl, we recommend that you take the necessary precautions to prevent the contraction of bacterial infections. 

So, what precautions should you take as an individual? Avoid utilizing any toilet right away after another person has used the washroom. Always consider using a toilet that has stayed long after its use.

The second precaution is to always wait for some time to pass before sitting on the freshly utilized toilet. Doing so permits all bacteria, viruses, and parasites left on the toilet water or seat to die.

You should also develop a culture of flushing the toilet prior to using it and use tissue paper to wipe your toilet seat every time before sitting on it. However, it’s not a must to follow these precautions if you’re using your home toilet, but it’s worth it!

Final Thoughts

Now that you’re aware that it’s theoretical and impossible to get STDs from toilet water splashing, you should use your toilet worry-free. But also, note that STDs are not your friend! If you suspect that you’ve contracted an STD, please visit a doctor for diagnosis and early treatment to avoid further negative health impacts. However, abstaining from sex is the most appropriate way to avoid the contraction of STDs.


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