Taking care of yourself is good and right. The main thing is that quality care does not turn into fanaticism. After all, too much good is also bad. And the doctors named 11 hygiene habits that have no place in the life of a healthy person.
Clean your ears with cotton swabs
Pediatricians repeat this nonstop — do not try to clean children’s ears with cotton swabs or anything similar. And you don’t need to yourself either. Cotton swabs have already caused countless injuries, from a ruptured eardrum to ear infections and hearing loss. According to the Master of Medicine Brande Carpenter, the ear canal does not need cleaning at all. It is enough just to take a shower, as usual — enough water gets into the ears at the same time to naturally remove the accumulated sulfur.
To take a bath with foam
Or throw bath bombs into the water. It is very pleasant to take a fragrant bath with foam. But in fact, such procedures can result in irritation on the skin and a fungal infection. The bombs and bath foams may contain aggressive detergents that wash away protective oils, including in intimate places, disturbing the natural pH balance of the skin. «Bubble bath increases the risk of vaginal infections and even bladder infections,» added Jen Gunter, MD.
No one needs this procedure at all unless a doctor prescribes it. Researchers have found that douching washes out beneficial microflora, increases the risk of developing various infections and increases the impact on the mucous membranes of phthalates, harmful chemicals that can disrupt the hormonal background and lead to problems with the reproductive system.
Use a sanitizer
The sanitizer in the purse is our new reality. But overdoing it with a sanitizer is even worse than giving it up. Some hand sanitizers contain triclosan, a synthetic compound that disrupts the skin’s natural protective balance and makes us more vulnerable to bacteria. The American Food and Drug Administration warns that prolonged exposure to disinfectants can negatively affect even the hormonal balance.
Use a hand dryer
The whole world is switching to hand dryers, abandoning paper towels — it’s more environmentally friendly. But at the same time, dryers for hygiene and health are much more harmful. Towels are removed from the hands of bacteria remaining after washing. And the dryers are not. Worse, they literally spray these microorganisms in the air, creating a contagious fog filled with fecal bacteria — this was discovered by experts at the Mayo Clinic. And they also dry the skin of the hands very much.
Standing under a hot shower for a long time
In winter, this is sometimes the only way to keep warm. But not the most useful. Dermatologist Alan Parks claims that a hot shower, especially in combination with detergents, washes away the protective layer from the skin, making you an easy prey for bacteria. Therefore, a hot shower should be very short. It is advisable to take it before going to bed: according to experts, after a hot shower, cooling occurs, which slows down the metabolic activity of the body, facilitating the transition to sleep. And too long hot shower, on the contrary, invigorates.
Wash your hair every day
Daily washing of hair spoils the hair. Sebum is necessary for the hair to nourish them. If it is constantly washed off, the hair becomes brittle, even if the roots are greasy. And what to do if the head is dirty? Use dry shampoo — it is completely safe for hair. Gradually, the hair will «wean itself» from frequent washing, it will be required less often.
Moisturize the skin too much
When the skin is dry, it seems natural to smear it with cream and pour thermal water without stopping. However, according to Garnier experts, this approach can develop addiction — the skin gets used to the fact that moisture in excess comes from the outside and ceases to produce emollients itself. As a result, the skin becomes even drier. Therefore, it is better to apply the cream in a very thin layer, choosing non-oil-based products.
Brushing your teeth after eating
More precisely, right after eating. After eating, you need to wait for some time, at least half an hour, and only then rush to the toothbrush. During meals, the acid contained in the food weakens the enamel, if you start using a brush and paste immediately after eating, there is a considerable risk of damaging it even more, experts at the Mayo clinic warn.
Use aggressive scrubs
Or even a stiff washcloth. Too much exfoliation is also bad. First of all, because it is possible to damage the epidermis, depriving the skin of natural protection. According to the Dermatology Alliance, in response to this, the glands begin to produce more sebum to compensate for the loss. And as a result, there is an imbalance: we dry the skin, and in response it becomes more and more oily.
Sneeze while covering your mouth with your palm
No, it is necessary to cover your mouth during sneezing, of course. But it’s time to get used to sneezing into a handkerchief or elbow. After all, with the same palm with which you covered your mouth, you then touch many surfaces and even other people. According to the American Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, this is how people infect each other with influenza, SARS and covid — this is the main way of spreading respiratory infections.