Evening tabloid Nikkan Gendai (Mar. 11) describes Mr. “B” as a salaryman who several times a month likes to drop in on a video rental shop, where he can enjoy watching smut, and perform other activities, in a private cubicle. Since he doesn’t want his business suit or shirt to get wrinkled, he removes them and watches the adult videos in his underwear.
One day he began to feel an itching sensation on his back, which persisted.
“You’ve got scabies,” pronounced his dermatologist, who went on to explain this parasitic skin disease, also called mange, is usually spread by skin to skin contact.
“Typically once the organisms that cause this leave the human body they die after a short time; but since they are contagious, people being treated for scabies need to be careful when laundering their underwear. If possible, they should be washed in water above 60 degrees centigrade,” the doc advised.
Nikkan Gendai nervously proceeds to take up the rather distasteful subject of whether or not sexually transmitted diseases et al. can be passed on to family members via common-use towels or the washer.
“Diseases like gonorrhea or Chlamydia can’t be transmitted by hand via a towel,” a doctor tells the newspaper. “Likewise for syphilis. And fundamentally speaking, the same goes for undershorts carrying discharge from urinary tract infections when laundered together. But care should be taken that your wife or children don’t make direct contact with your stained undershorts before they’re washed.”
Anyone in the throes of violent nausea or diarrhea needs to be particularly cautious.
“A towel used to mop up vomit shouldn’t be laundered with other items,” the sensei warns. “Viruses could adhere to the other items. Noroviruses are particularly easy to spread and can’t be eliminated by ordinary laundering in water.
“You should wear a mask and gloves when washing them, and afterward treat them with a chlorine-based disinfectant.”
Source: “Anata no pantsu ya taoru, kazoku no to issho ni arette ii no?” Nikkan Gendai (Mar. 11, Page 13)