Inventor Of Patent Shows The Proper Method To Hang Toilet Paper Is 'Over' Rather Than 'Under'

Apr 16, 2020

While half of you readers will confidently scroll down, assuming you are right and have been all along, the other half is possibly agonizing that perhaps they have been in the wrong all this time. No matter which camp you fall into, it’s very likely that you have a strong willed preference as to whether toilet paper is hung “over” or “under.”

Studies show that it all comes down to bacteria. The way you hang your toilet paper can make a difference in how much bacteria you are collecting on your hands, not to mention how much of it you are transferring to your keyboard, smartphone, remote control, or anywhere else in your home, car, and office.

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And the winner is… Over!

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Hanging your toilet paper in the “over” fashion allows you to touch less of the toilet paper roll’s surroundings. When the toilet paper is hung “under,” fingers are more likely to brush the wall or the toilet paper dispenser, potentially picking up harmful bacteria. These are the same bacteria that we can pick up touching the flush handle, sink, or stall door; in other words, the reasons that we are so heavily advised to conduct serious hand washing every time we use the restroom. Ideally, to avoid bacteria, you want to really scrub your hands for the duration of two “Happy Birthday” rounds of song.

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While it’s also true that there is good bacteria and bad, it stands to reason that any bacteria you find in a bathroom won’t be of the good variety! According to a study done by the University of Colorado, “Using a high-tech genetic sequencing tool, researchers identified 19 groups of bacteria on the doors, floors, faucet handles, soap dispensers, and toilets of 12 public restrooms in Colorado — six men’s restrooms and six women’s restrooms. Many of the bacteria strains identified could be transmitted by touching contaminated surfaces.”

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So what does this mean? First of all, the main type of bacteria found in restrooms is E. Coli – infamous for causing food poisoning. It’s easily transferred by any contact, both to and from anything you touch. This is why the “over” method is scientifically preferable, allowing us to have less contact with contaminated surfaces.

But if you want an even more "authoritative" answer than that, why not take a look at the original toilet paper patent, courtesy of the Google Patent Database: Here, the inventor, Seth Wheeler, back in 1891, showed the proper way for toilet paper to be hung. So, there you have it.

Our content is created to the best of our knowledge, yet it is of general nature and cannot in any way substitute an individual consultation with your doctor. Your health is important to us!

What team are you on the hotly debated over or under dispute? Let us know! Show this article to your friends and family to get their opinions on the matter, too.