Professor of Microbiology Laura Bowater states,If it is an exposed roll that might have encountered hands that are gripping it while a strip is being ripped off and those hands arent very clean then there is a chance that they may have transferred germs to the roll.”
Also, an exposed roll sat near to a toilet may get splashed with faecal microbes during flushing, especially if the lid isnt closed. Flushing can create splashing opportunities that will enable small water droplets to be transferred through the air and land on toilet rolls and the toilet seat.
But it might not be as gross as we fear. Laura says, Research has shown. that the majority of cultured bacteria found on a toilet seat are actually the bacteria we have on our skin and not faecal bacteria Not too surprising really.
The best way, though it might still give you the creeps, is to use an anti-bacterial wipe on the seat, then just sit, or hover if that’s your thing.
Public toilets really aren’t dangerous or unhealthy any way you use them. They mostly just gross people out, so maybe the best advice is to just work on getting over your hang up and use your stall in peace!