It takes a gross message to make students wash hands after loo visit!December 16th, 2008 - 3:23 pm ICT by ANI
Washington, Dec 16 (ANI): “Poo on you, wash your hands” or “You just peed, wash your handsthese are some of the gross messages that could get students to wash their hands after their visit to the toilet, says a new study.
The revision, conducted by University of Denver (DU) Associate Professor Renee Botta, has suggested that it takes “gross” messaging to get undergraduate students to wash their hands more frequently after going to the bathroom.
For their study, researchers posted messages in the bathrooms of two DU undergraduate residence halls in fall 2007. And the messaged read something like, “Poo on you, wash your hands” or “You just peed, wash your hands,” and contained vivid graphics and photos.
The messages resulted in increased hand washing among females by 26 percent and among males by 8 percent.
“Fear of spreading germs or getting sick by not washing didn”t mean much to students. What got their attention was the knowledge that they might be walking around with “gross things” on their hands if they didn”t wash,” said Botta, the lead author of the study and an associate professor in the Department of Mass Communications and Journalism Studies.
The researchers found that the observations in two control dorms over the same four-week period showed that hand washing decreased 2 percentage points among females and 21.5 percentage points among males.
“We tried gross messages, germ messages and you”ll-get-sick messages. And the only ones that stuck was gross. We found that the ”gross factor” is what works, and we were able to increase hand washing behavior by a lot,” said Assistant Director of Health Promotions Katie Dunker, one of a team of five who conducted the pilot study.
And it looks like the findings are generating interest as Universities including UC Santa Barbara, Wyoming, Colorado State and CUColorado Springs have asked to borrow DU’’s techniques in hopes of improving student hand washing behavior on their campuses.
“The relevance of the message is really, really important. You can threaten that they”ll get the flu or promise a flu-free winter, but if they don”t really care about that, your message is going to fall flat,” said Botta.
The study was recently published in Communication in Healthcare journal. (ANI)
- Undergraduates not so hygiene conscious after all - Dec 16, 2008
- Why being grossed out by poo is good for you! - Jan 04, 2011
- How to protect kids this flu season - Jan 16, 2011
- Beware, ATMs are as dirty as public toilets - Jan 12, 2011
- Airport toilets 'teeming with germs and filth' - May 14, 2010
- Hand sanitizers stop working after just 2 minutes: Study - Oct 22, 2010
- Unhygienic practices lead to poor academic performance: Study - May 30, 2012
- Supermarket carts 'more toxic than public bathrooms' - Mar 09, 2011
- Now, a Toepener to open bathroom doors with the foot - Feb 04, 2011
- iPads and iPhones at Apple stores teeming with germs, says Oz expert - Oct 15, 2010
- Five-second rule for fallen food is bogus - Jul 21, 2010
- Eating lunch off toilet seats safer than office desk! - Jul 20, 2010
- Your dirty laundry is dirtier than you think - May 29, 2010
- Masks, hand washing can smother flu spread - Feb 01, 2012
- Washing raw chicken 'ups food poisoning risk' - Jul 24, 2010
Tags: botta, colorado state, dorms, dunker, germ, germs, going to the bathroom, gross things, health promotions, journalism studies, mass communications, percentage points, pilot study, poo, study researchers, uc santa barbara, undergraduate residence halls, university of denver, vivid graphics, wash hands