You’ve probably heard of “white coat hypertension.” That’s when your blood pressure is fine, except when you go to your doctor’s office.
The mere sight of a doctor (in a white coat or not) is enough to cause stress. In turn, this gives you high blood pressure.
Now, a new study shows that the traditional white coat doctors wear can have far more damaging effects on your health.
Researchers from the University of Wisconsin surveyed 72 studies that assessed bacterial contamination of a number of items worn or used by doctors. These included neckties, stethoscopes, electronic devices…and white lab coats.[i]
The results showed the white coats are often crawling with harmful bacteria. Some are even drug-resistant. These are the types of bugs linked to hospital infections. Antibiotics don’t work against them.
Up to 16% of doctors’ coats have MRSA. This is the germ that causes dangerous staph infections. And 42% have gram-negative bacteria. These cause pneumonia, blood infections, and meningitis.[ii] [iii]
A number of studies have found that most physicians wear their coats for more than a week without washing them. Some go more than a month between washings.[iv]
Ironically, research shows most patients prefer their doctors to wear white coats. Some people seem to think it makes them seem more authoritative.[v]
The Dark Side of Your Doctor’s White Coat
You’re clearly better off if your doctor wears fresh clothes every day. The evidence is so overwhelming that 10 years ago the American Medical Association considered a proposal that doctors hang up their lab coats for good.
If you have a doctor who uses a white coat, show them this article. Even if they don’t want to give up their lab coat, they can lower the chances of passing on infection by wearing a freshly laundered coat every day.
And they can opt for short-sleeve versions while frequently washing their hands. A study published in the journal Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology found this combination works to lower transmission of pathogens.
You can also suggest your doctor look into special medical attire made of anti-microbial textiles. Research shows these fabrics reduce the presence of bacteria.[vi]
Editor’s Note: There’s one person you should ask if you’re looking for a great doctor. Get all the details in Independent Healing, your best source for unbiased, science-backed health solutions. Go HERE to subscribe.
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