…Did you know that you have certain body parts that you are not washing enough?
You might think that taking a shower every day and rubbing your body with lots of gels, soap bars, and sponges might be enough for keeping you clean, fresh, and away from nasty bacteria.
According to experts, this is not enough. They explained that there are actually many body parts that people don’t give as much attention to as they should.
As we all already know, good hygiene starts with washing your body every day or at least every two days, in order to prevent bacteria. We were curious to find out more about these neglected areas, so we’ve talked to several experts.
Here are 10 body parts you are not washing enough!
1. Under your fingernails
You already know that you have to wash your hands very well after you touch raw meat, sneeze, cough, use the restroom, spend time outside, and so on.
Since the beginning of the pandemic, all doctors advised people to wash their hands for at least 60 seconds, with warm water and a sufficient quantity of soap.
However, experts say that if you don’t scrub under your nails, you are not done with the whole process. In conformity with Dr. Robert Glatter, MD, assistant professor of emergency medicine at Lenox Hill Hospital in New York City, fecal bacteria can set up camp under your fingernails and it will colonize the whole area.
In order to prevent this, doctors say that you can soak a cotton swab in warm water with soap and then swab it under your nails to get rid of all the bacteria that is there.
2. The belly button
The second body part that people tend to neglect is their belly buttons. Dr. Glatter stated that this area is warm and it has both crevices and nooks, which makes it a suitable place for bacteria and germs to hide.
You can get rid of all the microbes that are there with the help of a cotton swab soaked in warm water mixed with soap or with alcohol. If you have a piercing in your belly button, you should wash it even more frequently, because that area is prone to developing infections.
3. The scalp
Your hair doesn’t need to be washed every single day, but how much attention do people give to their scalps? Dr. Glatter said that even though you don’t wash your hair daily, you should massage it and scrub it every day, in order to avoid the buildup of dead skin cells.
Bacteria and body mites feed themselves by eating dead skin cells, so it is very important to avoid this as much as you can. Besides that, if you massage your scalp with warm water, you can help increase blood flow.
Furthermore, you can actually manually remove the dead cells that can lead to itchiness, dandruff, and flaky scalp. Keep in mind that you should pay a lot more attention to your scalp if you use styling products or dry shampoo often.
4. Behind the ears
Another body part that people forget about is behind their ears. Experts say that this is an area where a lot of sebaceous glands secrete sebum.
In addition to that, sebum represents one of the best hiding places possible for several bacteria, such as Tinea capitis and corporis, and Staph aureus.
If you don’t wash this body part the way you should, daily, to be exact, you can easily develop a bad smell there.
Sonia Batra, dermatologist, MD, and co-host of The Doctors stated that the majority of times, people believe that if they brush their teeth and use dental floss afterwards their dental hygiene is correct and balanced.
She added that there are also patients who take an extra step when it comes to their oral hygiene and use mouthwash in order to get rid of bacteria and bad breath.
Even though all of these are very important for having healthy and beautiful teeth, they still neglect one of the important steps: taking care of their tongues. As Dr. Batra said, this body part has a lot of bumps and little ridges along its surface, which can be a great place to hide germs and microbes.
If you don’t clean your tongue with a toothbrush or with a tongue scraper, you might develop bad breath and even tooth decay. Make sure to never neglect this body part!
6. Elbows and creases
Even though your elbows and your creases might be covered by long sleeves the majority of the day, these represent body parts that are not taken into consideration the way they should be.
For example, you often place your elbows on surfaces that may not be clean or sanitized, such as restaurant tables, desks, or countertops. If you don’t wash them, you can risk developing scaly and dry skin, which will make you more prone to minor skin breaks.
This issue doesn’t sound so scary, but it can actually be the first step in growing severe infections, such as MRSA and Staph aureus. If you want to avoid these problems, make sure to clean your elbows and your creases every day with a bath pouf or a washcloth.
7. The back of the neck
When you are in the shower, don’t forget to focus your attention on the back of your neck! This body part is usually moist and warm and if you have longer hair or you exercise on a daily basis, there are more chances for this area to develop bacteria and body mites.
Make sure to wash it with soap and warm water. You can also use a bath sponge or a wet washcloth.
8. The back
You might think that you wash your back enough, given the fact that when you stand in the shower, this body part gets wet and foamy. However, if you want to make sure that this area is as clean as you want it to be, invest in a back scrubber that has a long handle, so you can reach all the difficult spots.
Experts recommend washing this area at least three times a week, to remove all the dead skin cells and reduce the risk of developing skin and soft-tissue infections.
9. The Bottom and the sides of the feet
According to dermatologist Sonia Batra, many people have the impression that their feet are clean simply from the fact that when they’re in the shower, the water and the soap slide down their bodies.
The expert said that this is not enough, and feet are a body part that requires a lot more attention. She stated that they need to be scrubbed with a pumice stone every day, in order to prevent building bacteria.
Tinea pedis, a fungus that it’s responsible for causing the syndrome of the athlete’s foot, and Staph aureus are two germs that can develop around your feet, especially if you sweat a lot, if you don’t wear socks with your shoes, or if you wear flip-flops or sandals.
10. The groin
The last body part in our list is the groin area. In order to have overall good hygiene, you need to take care of your private parts as well, because they can get warm and grow bacteria.
These germs can develop even further, which can lead to infections, bad odors, and ingrown hairs. Make sure to use special products for these zones, because these areas are usually more sensitive than the other parts of your body.
Dr. Glatter said that washing them once a day is enough, but if you exercise you need to hop in the shower immediately afterwards, because sweat can dry and cause irritation.
…If you want to be more informed regarding your health, make sure to check this article out as well: 10 Common Beverages You Should Avoid!