The Microbes On A Child’s Handprint After Playing Outside Show The Bacteria Lurking


[Photo: Tasha Sturm/Microbe World]

Check out all this bacteria lurking on the handprint of an eight-year-old boy after playing outside.

Before you get too grossed out remember we’re never truly alone. Nope. Our bodies are home to millions of bacteria and microorganisms, most of them harmless and quite a few of them beneficial. Keep that in mind next time you’re feeling lonely.

Microbiologist Tasha Sturm took the print of her son’s hand after he’d been playing outside. The microbes show just how much bacteria we’re exposed to.

The print was taken on an agar (a sterile petri dish filled with a substance used to grow bacteria) which was then incubated at body temperature for a day then left to sit out at room temperature. Sturm captured the photo after allowing the bacteria to grow for about a week.


[Photo: Tasha Sturm/Microbe World]

The image above is a close up of the white blob visible in the bottom right of the print. Sturm thinks it’s Bacillus: a rod shaped bacterium commonly found in dirt.

The yellow and orange spots are thought to be yeast while some of the white spots may be Staphylococcus.

‘It’s normal stuff that we’re exposed to every day. The skin protects us from a lot of the bad stuff out there,’ Sturm told Today Health & Wellness. ‘The take home message is that to have a healthy immune system, you’ve got to be exposed to stuff.’

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