Why you should take off your festival wristband and kill it with fire immediately

While festival wristbands are a badge of hedonistic honour for many, scientists have now warned that they are also a harbour for a disgusting amount of bacteria.

According to researchers from the University of Surrey, bacteria on wristbands is “about 20 times higher than you would expect to find on... clothing that would be regularly laundered”.

Dr Alison Cottell, a microbiologist from the university, said anyone who works in a hands-on job like nursing or food preparation should remove them immediately.

Analysis of Reading 2013 wristbands that were still being worn showed a "surprisingly high number" of staphylococci and micrococci bacteria, according to the Daily Mail.

Staphylococci are usually harmless although they can cause boils and infections of cuts and grazes, and can also cause a form of acute food poisoning if they are ingested.

Infections are most likely to affect the ability of cuts and grazes to heal. More serious, but rare, complications include septicaemia.

  • Dr Alison Cottell
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