Why Should You Take Your Shoes Off Inside?

Why Should You Take Your Shoes Off Inside?

Nov 23 , 2021


Tags - Shoes and Germs

In many cultures, such as Asian and Middle Eastern countries, it’s normal to take your shoes off before entering the home.

And whilst this tradition could have started to stop visitors from dragging in mud or dirt onto floors and carpets, there is a lot of research that supports taking shoes off inside to keep germs away too.

Quite obviously, taking your shoes off before entering the home can help to keep the indoor space clean and keep everyone inside healthier.

In fact, the average shoe holds hundreds and thousands of bacteria per square inch - that’s a lot!

And, the soles of our shoes are a happy meet and greet place for microbes, and with every step you take outside, you collect more and more; especially if you’re entering places such as public restrooms.

With that said, let’s take a look at the 4 common types of germs found on shoes as well as discussing 5 reasons why you should take shoes off when you go inside.

Common Types of Germs on Shoes

One of the biggest reasons to remove your shoes indoors is to cut down on any possible transmission of disease carrying bacteria.

Inevitably, infectious bacteria can latch onto shoes when you’ve been walking outdoors in places with high concentration of pathogens; these are orgasms that cause disease.

And, the tread and cracks in the soles are the perfect place for bacteria to linger.

So, here are the 4 most common types of germs that are found on shoes can can spread indoors:

1. Escherichia Coli (E. coli)

Research has found that this is the most common type found on the bottom of your shoes.

Consequently, these germs can cause intestinal and urinary tract infections.

And although e.coli can be found almost anywhere, it’s more common in rural areas where there are animal droppings.

2. Clostridium Difficile (C. diff)

These germs can cause very unpleasant-smelling diarrhea and can trigger colitis, which is inflammation of the colon.

Studies reveal that homes that become contaminated with this bacteria are more likely in urban settings.

3. Staphylococcus Aureus

These germs are the most dangerous out of staphylococcus bacteria.

And, it’s been found that this has been more commonly found on shoes of those people who work in either the healthcare sector or in food service industries.

4. Pesticides 

Pesticides used on crops, parks and other green areas can easily be tracked on the soles of your shoes.

Unfortunately, these chemicals have been found to be associated with health risks, like skin or eye irritations.

But, in more serious cases, it can result in severe illnesses such as cancer.

6 Reasons to Take Shoes Off Inside

It might be hard to imagine that a simple pair of shoes can carry so many disease-causing germs.

But, you might want to start thinking twice about walking around in your home wearing the shoes you wore outside. Here’s 5 reasons why you should take your shoes off inside:

1. There Are Millions of Bacterial Organisms Living on One Shoe

According to science, shoes are dirtier than a toilet seat; toilets typically have about 1000 bacteria or less, whereas shoes have been found to have 66 million!

2. Most Shoes Carry Feces

Many tests have found that 9 out of 10 types of bacteria found on shoes are found in human and animal waste.

Actually, this comes as no surprise, especially if you’re walking in public restrooms or outdoor areas with bird and animal droppings.

3. Germs Can Make You Sick

We touched on the germs that can cause you to fall ill above, but to put this into perspective: an average of 421,000 units of germs are found on the outside of the shoe and around 2,889 on the inside, which can result in infections, wounds, pneumonia, and other illnesses.

4. Germs Live Longer on Shoes Than Any Other Surface

Simply, the more places you walk, the more germs your shoes will pick up and these will feed the growth of bacteria that’s already present; it’s a never-ending cycle.

And, the longer the bacteria grows, the stronger and more dangerous it becomes.

5. 90% of Germs On Shoes are Transferred to Homes

Germs can easily transfer onto the floor of your home, be it wood, lino or carpet.

Actually, carpet takes in even more germs because of its nooks and crannies.

And, if you have little children who like to play on the floor, they’ll be susceptible to picking up these germs and can become ill more frequently.

The Takeaway

It’s safe to say, shoes carry a lot of germs and that’s not pleasant for anyone.

So, if you want to make shoe removal a standard practice in your home, consider purchasing a shoe rack that you can place as you first enter.

However, you can just politely ask your guests if they would mind removing their shoes as well.

But, if you’re one of those people who cannot stand walking around barefoot, you could keep slippers or a specific set of shoes that are only to be worn inside.

Please get in touch to find out more.

In the meantime, check our range of comfortable shoes here.

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