My girlfriend insisted that I should sit down in the future after reading this tip (German) for easier cleaning:

When standing, the stream sprays up to 3.50 m far, as measured from a drop height of about 77 cm. This means, even toothbrushes are in danger!

Can this be possible? Our toothbrushes are in front of the toilet and I can't imagine that happening.

  • 3
    I thought people generally kept toothbrushes inside a cabinet so that soapy water from the sink doesn't get splashed on them by accident. I never even considered toilet splash-back. Nov 21, 2011 at 18:44
  • 2
    The source is not really notable, it is something like a forum. But I vaguely remember reading something similar a long while ago, so I'm pretty certain there are claims like this going around. I also improved the translation a bit, though it was pretty good already
    – Mad Scientist
    Nov 21, 2011 at 18:47
  • 12
    I think it is more interesting to see if a splash of urine on a toothbrush can actually cause any health risks. That is a more interesting question in my opinion.
    – picakhu
    Nov 21, 2011 at 22:26
  • 2
    @Simon and Kibbee will be happy to know their questions have already been considered on Skeptics.SE: skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/4317/… skeptics.stackexchange.com/questions/3202/…
    – Oddthinking
    Nov 21, 2011 at 23:58
  • 4
    Interesting comment here - naturalnews.com/031020_toothbrushes_contamination.html - pointing out that things like fecal coliform bacteria are found on ttoothbrushes kept in a cupboard in a different room...
    – Rory Alsop
    Nov 22, 2011 at 8:36

1 Answer 1


Well, according to the Mythbusters, your toothbrush is in danger no matter where you keep it.

Every time you flush a toilet, it releases an aerosol spray of tiny tainted water droplets. [...] At the end of the month-long trial, they sent their toothbrush collection to a microbiologist for bacterial testing. Astonishingly, all the toothbrushes were speckled with microscopic fecal matter, including the [control toothbrushes] that had never seen the inside of a bathroom. The confirmed myth unfortunately proved that there's indeed fecal matter on toothbrushes — and also everywhere else.

I don't know anyone who drops a deuce while standing up, so even if you were to sit down to relieve yourself, your toothbrush is in danger.

  • Is myth busters considered a reliable source? Most of there findings are not replicated. Nov 2, 2012 at 2:39
  • 1
    @David - Depends on the situation, they have been discussed in meta before and it seems like the consensus is that they need to be taken on a case-by-case basis as a source.
    – rjzii
    Nov 8, 2012 at 13:48

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