Merely rinsing out the part of the bottle your mouth touches is not enough; it’s important to scrub the inside of the container too.
Reusable water bottles provide tons of perks. Aside from keeping you hydrated and helping you save some money, they also contribute to less plastic pollution. Although there appears to be no drawbacks, these bottles are washed less than other containers, with experts claiming that they’re perfect brewing environments for bacteria.
Mashable spoke with a doctor who says that a large percentage of water bottles are dirty and washed incorrectly. Merely rinsing out the part of the bottle your mouth touches is not enough; it’s important to scrub the inside of the container too.
“Bacteria tend to form a biofilm on the inside of the reusable container over time. So you need mechanical action to get rid of that biofilm that coats the inside of the bottle,” says Dr. Philip Tierno.
The biofilm that builds up inside these containers can be compared to the one that builds up on bathtubs, which is a pretty gross. It has an assortment of bacteria that can be picked up from different places like your mouth or the outside environment. By touching things, jumping on elevators, using stairs and meeting new people you’re exposing yourself to bacteria, which can easily sneak inside your bottle when you screw on and off the lid.
Luckily, if your bottle is properly washed, you can continue to use it until it breaks. The entire container must be cleaned thoroughly and regularly, using soap, hot water, and a bottle brush. Keep an eye out for nooks and ridges and and be mindful of your brush and sponge, cleaning these regularly since bacteria can be easily transferred.