Are you a bit obsessive about washing your hands when touching objects that may have been ‘touched’ by others?
Do you constantly worry about opening toilet doors – especially when you watch other people leave the bathroom without washing their hands?
You may be suffering from germaphobia an extreme condition where the sufferer goes to extreme lengths to avoid touching ‘infected’ areas. The term has regained interest when the 45th President of the United States, Donald Trump, described himself as a germaphobe.
Mysophobia, also known as verminophobia, germophobia, germaphobia, bacillophobia and bacteriophobia, is a pathological fear of contamination and germs.
The term was coined by Dr. William Alexander Hammond in 1879 when describing a case of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) exhibited in repeatedly washing one’s hands.
Mysophobia has long been related to the OCD of constantly washing one’s hands. Names pertaining directly to the abnormal fear of dirt and filth include molysmophobia or molysomophobia, rhypophobia, and rupophobia, whereas the terms bacillophobia and bacteriophobia specifically refer to the fear of bacteria and microbes in general.
The term mysophobia comes from the Greek μύσος (musos), “uncleanness and φόβος (phobos), “fear”.
There are some washrooms out there that warrant the treatment handed out by germaphobes – they are really, really bad and are desperately in need of some TLC, particularly the comprehensive level of care offered by the Clean Team at NWR Hygiene Group, who specialise in providing the highest levels of washroom services to their clients. Not only do we offer a variety of facilities management services, we also offer industry-leading products with ‘green’ credentials that promote environmentally sound practices.
Take a look at our germaphobe sufferer below to see how you compare.