12 Disgustingly Common Habits People Didn’t Realize Were Gross Until Much Later in Life

Have you ever learned that something you have been doing your entire life is disgusting? You’re not alone. After someone recently asked a popular online forum about their experiences with this, here are their honest confessions.

1. Not Changing Bed Sheets

woman changing sheets making bed
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Did you know that you are supposed to wash your bed sheets once per week? Better yet, do you actually do it? A surprising number of folks confess it is something they didn’t learn until embarrassingly late in life.

2. Not Using Proper Teeth Brushing Etiquette

picking teeth bad manners
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There are a few different habits people developed (or didn’t develop) that are super gross. One guy admits that his sister used to take her toothbrush bristles and rub them all over the faucet where the water pours out.

Another explains he had no idea that he wasn’t supposed to dry his toothbrush on the hand towel. Finally, a third commenter confesses he used to rub his teeth with the handtowel itself to dry them off after brushing.

3. Flushing Tampons

woman saying oops
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This one may be more gross for the plumber fixing the problem than the offender, but many women don’t know that you are not supposed to flush tampons. A plumber in the thread warns that flushable wipers aren’t really flushable!

4. Not Washing New Clothes

woman inspecting laundry
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Be honest. Do you wash all new articles of clothing before wearing them? Some people don’t and don’t realize how gross it is. From the handling in shipment to the strangers trying them on before your purchase, there are a multitude of ick factors. Primarily, there may be chemicals on the clothing that can be toxic and thus harmful.

5. Not Washing Behind Your Ears

woman inspecting laundry
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A surprising number of people admit that they didn’t know to wash behind their ears until much later in life. If you don’t, you build up some funk and a strange odor, apparently.

6. Not Washing Your Belly Button

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“For years, I didn’t wash my belly button because it was really sensitive, so I hated being touched there. Turns out that if you wash it consistently, it desensitizes,” one writes.

7. Not Closing the Lid to the Toilet

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I can honestly say that I can relate to this nastiness: “I didn’t use to close the lid on the toilet before flushing. Oh, the sharticles.” Haha! My husband is the first person in my life to ever explain the need to do this. I’d never seen any adults in my life do it. To think, there are toilet seats left open everywhere. YUCK!

8. Not Wiping to Completion

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I don’t know if this constitutes a “common” disgusting habit, but I’ve opted NOT to paraphrase. A user admits: “I used to take poops and would wipe for a bit, but if it was taking too long, I would just stuff a wad of toilet paper in my butt crack and deal with it later.”

After someone questioned what they had just read, another replied: “Something you’ll never be able to un-read. I’m traumatized.” Agreed. If I can’t unread it, neither can you! Ha! I’m sorry

9. Chewing on Fingernails

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Forget the dental issues of possible chipped teeth and misalignment. Under your fingernails is one of the grossest places on your body. It houses the most bacteria. Dr. Richard Scher, M.D., an expert on nail disorders at Weill Cornell Medical College, explains:

“Along with dead skin cells and dirt, nasty germs like Klebsiella (bacteria that cause pneumonia and urinary tract infections) and Candida parapsilosis (a yeast that causes wound and bloodstream infections) can be found under fingernails. Salmonella and E. coli are also found under your nails.”

10. Not Wiping Front to Back

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It is imperative that women wipe front-to-back after doing their business; otherwise, they are susceptible to things like yeast infections, urinary tract infections (UTIs), and other bacterial infections. Numerous women admit they didn’t learn until their teenage (and later) years that you don’t wipe back-to-front.

11. Putting Eggshells Back Into the Carton

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How many of you are putting cracked eggshells back into the carton? Did you know that you’re risking cross-contaminating the other eggs? Salmonella can be both inside the egg itself and on the outer shell. It wouldn’t be the internet if a bunch of people didn’t jump in to say things like, “I do this all the time, and I’m just fine,” but medical professionals warn not to.

12. Wearing Shoes Indoors

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Wearing shoes inside your home is another ick factor many people didn’t realize was gross. A member writes: “My family was not a shoes-off family, and they always wore outside shoes inside.

I remember a few friends’ homes were strict shoes-off homes, but I thought that was the minority. I was about 27 years old before I realized it was disgusting, and people were definitely judging my etiquette.”

20 Top Professions That Appear to Attract the Worst Types of People

American soldier
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While scrolling through a popular online forum, I encountered the question, which profession attracts the worst kinds of people? These were the highest-voted responses.

22 Honest Things Men Really Fantasize About Today

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Despite being told “Nothing,” many of us are really wondering what is going on inside a man’s head. Are you? After someone asked a men’s online forum what fantasies they regularly entertain, here are their honest confessions.

27 Legal Things That Should Have Stopped Being Legal a Long Time Ago

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A popular online community recently discussed legal things that should be illegalized immediately. I didn’t see this one, but I’ll add that multi-level marketing (MLMs), otherwise known as network marketing, are pyramid schemes that found a loophole to operate legally, and it’s predatory and should be legalized immediately. Nonetheless, here are the things the forum decided on. Do you agree?

21 Films That Would NEVER in a Million Years Be Made Today

Don't Tell Mom the Babysitter's Dead Christina Applegate
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The film landscape has developed over time, reflecting society’s shifting ideals and social standards. Some classic films, while popular at the time, may not hold up to today’s standards and sensitivities. Here are a handful of films that would never be made today because of it.

Illegalize It Now: 18 Legal Things in America That Really Shouldn’t Be

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According to an online community, there are dozens, if not more, of legal things that should be illegalized immediately. Here are their top-voted suggestions. Do you agree?




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Elizabeth Ervin is the owner of Sober Healing. She is a freelance writer passionate about opioid recovery and has celebrated breaking free since 09-27-2013. She advocates for mental health awareness and encourages others to embrace healing, recovery, and Jesus.