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School mat

Hello, thank you for listening to my problem.
        I am a seventeen-year-old 12th. grade student at Saugus High
School in Southern California.  My problem is that the mats at my
school, which the aerobics classes use are very dirty.  I know first
hand because I am in the class and use them.  They are as old as the
school, more than thirty years if I’m not mistaken.  Before aerobics was
offered the mats were used in wrestling, for almost 15 years.  In
addition to that, for the last 10 years the cheerleaders have been using
them to practise their stunts on.  Considering those two factors, I’m
sure you can immagine how dirty they are.  Twice in the last three years
aerobics students have acquired a skin infection from these mats; both
time scabies.  My question for you is what possible dangers (health
risks)are there in continuing to use these mats.  I’ve asked my teacher
why we don’t get new ones if they are so disgusting.  She told me they
cost too much and suggested I bring a towel.  I did; however, even now
I’m worried about catching something from my towel.  Now I don’t know if
I’m blowing this out of proportion but if the school can’t supply
sanitary mats for the students, perhaps they shouldn’t offer the class.
I ask your advice because if there is a problem, I want to present my
argument to the school board based on scientific medical facts, not
merely on my feelings. In using these mats, is there a risk to students’
health?  If so, please explain.  Thank you for taking your time to
listen/read?
                                                Sincerely,
                                                Shannon Mercogliano

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posted by admin in Uncategorized and have Comments (2)

2 Responses to “School mat”

  1. admin says:

    From my point of view, if you’re picking up scabies from these mats (this
    was confirmed by a lab I’m assuming) then this is something that is
    transmissible and the health department should be called.  If I were your
    parent I would raise a huge stink about this and would insist that new mats
    be bought.  There are such thiings as fund raisers.  A towel will pick up
    the scabies mites and transmit them so that is no solution.  Scabies is then
    transmissible from person to person.  They put people in isolation in
    nursing homes if they have scabies and people have to gown up to even go
    into the room!!!  Your teachers need a good lesson in infectious disease.
    Thirty years of dirt, oil, and sweat can grow mounds of bacteria.  They’re
    probably not even in any shape to properly disinfect at this point.  If they
    truly have CONFIRMED scabies (please note, this is important that it’s not a
    rumor passed around by students like "cooties" or something) they should
    probably be burned!  Call you  health department!!!

    I’ve cross-posted this to sci.med.laboratory, where some other lab people
    can have some input, too.

    Judy Dilworth, M.T. (ASCP)
    Microbiology

    - Hide quoted text — Show quoted text -

    mercogliano wrote:
    > Hello, thank you for listening to my problem.
    >         I am a seventeen-year-old 12th. grade student at Saugus High
    > School in Southern California.  My problem is that the mats at my
    > school, which the aerobics classes use are very dirty.  I know first
    > hand because I am in the class and use them.  They are as old as the
    > school, more than thirty years if I’m not mistaken.  Before aerobics was
    > offered the mats were used in wrestling, for almost 15 years.  In
    > addition to that, for the last 10 years the cheerleaders have been using
    > them to practise their stunts on.  Considering those two factors, I’m
    > sure you can immagine how dirty they are.  Twice in the last three years
    > aerobics students have acquired a skin infection from these mats; both
    > time scabies.  My question for you is what possible dangers (health
    > risks)are there in continuing to use these mats.  I’ve asked my teacher
    > why we don’t get new ones if they are so disgusting.  She told me they
    > cost too much and suggested I bring a towel.  I did; however, even now
    > I’m worried about catching something from my towel.  Now I don’t know if
    > I’m blowing this out of proportion but if the school can’t supply
    > sanitary mats for the students, perhaps they shouldn’t offer the class.
    > I ask your advice because if there is a problem, I want to present my
    > argument to the school board based on scientific medical facts, not
    > merely on my feelings. In using these mats, is there a risk to students’
    > health?  If so, please explain.  Thank you for taking your time to
    > listen/read?
    >                                                 Sincerely,
    >                                                 Shannon Mercogliano

  2. admin says:

    Dilworth is right. The mats need to be destroyed! All infected persons need
    to be treated.Members of their families may have already got it as well.All
    bed linen and clothes need to be laundered properly.
    This is California and not some third world country?