Showerheads a breeding ground for bacteria

A new study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences warns of bacterial buildup in showerheads and the effect that may have on people with compromised immune systems.

The opportunistic microbes, which thrive in the most, dark and wet environment of a showerhead, might cause problems if you’re pregnant, a substance abuser or otherwise immune compromised with cystic fibrosis, cancer, AIDS or a recent organ transplant.

The main culprit is an organism called Mycobacterium avium, a relative of the bacteria that causes tuberculosis. M. avium infections are increasingly common, perhaps because we take more showers than baths. Unlike baths, showerheads deliver the microorganisms as aerosolized particles that are small enough to be inhaled into the lungs.

See natural approaches for supporting your immune system and helping prevent colds and flu.