While no one knows exactly where it originated, the "Five Second Rule" has been a tradition for decades in many American households. You've probably done it yourself. Or know someone who has!
The rule states that when food is dropped on the floor, it is safe to eat if picked up within five seconds. But is this rule really true?
Believe it or not, a study was done at Rutgers University in New Brunswick, New Jersey recently to see if this rule actually held any truth. The scientists dropped four different foods on four different surface types, allowing contact times of one second, five seconds, thirty seconds, and three hundred seconds (five minutes). Each surface was contaminated with bacteria that commonly occur in the human digestive system, and allowed to dry.
- Watermelon was the most easily contaminated tested food; gummy bears the least.
- Carpet had a lower bacterial transfer rate than tile and stainless steel.
- The wetter the food, the higher risk of bacterial transfer.
- Although leaving food on the floor for a longer period of time resulted in more bacteria being transferred, some bacteria get on food instantly.
To put it more directly – the “Five Second Rule” is simply not true!
Since The Smile Shack is a dental office, let’s bring up another rule – the “Two Minute Rule!” Two minutes is how long you should brush your teeth, and you should do it at least twice per day. And while two minutes may seem like a long time, if you don’t spend at least one minute brushing the upper teeth and another brushing the lowers, you probably aren’t doing a very good job.
It is also important how you brush. Gently angling the brush towards the gumline helps prevent gum disease, brushing too hard can actually do damage.
We highly recommend reviewing your brushing technique with us during your next visit. A member of our team will be glad to help you make sure you get this important part of your health routine exactly right!
Whether it’s the “Five Second Rule,” the “Two Minute Rule,” or anything else important to your well-being , at The Smile Shack we are here for you! Please give us a call at 740-454-4112 with any questions you may have or to schedule an appointment. Your health is our primary concern – and that’s our “rule!”