Approximately 54% of households in the U.S. have dishwashers and use them at least once per week 1. What many families don't understand is that dishwashers can be breeding grounds for dangerous bacteria and fungi, so are dishes actually cleaner after going through the dishwasher?
A recent dishwasher study conducted at the University of Ljubljana in Slovenia and the University of Copenhagen in Denmark has shown dishwashers contain bacteria that are linked to urinary tract infections, skin infections, food poisoning, and heart infections. It also uncovered that fungi thrive in many dishwashers and can cause yeast infections and thrush 2. Approximately 309 distinct bacteria OTUs (operational taxonomic units) and 194 unique fungal OTUs were found living in the 24 sampled household dishwashers.