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Bleeding cut on head


I cut my head and it was bleeding so I went to the bathroom to get something to hold against it. I wiped the cut with a towel to wipe the blood away then held it against the cut to stop the blood.
After I found out the towel I used was actually a floor mat - used to stand on in the bathroom. The fact that people have been standing on the mat with their shoes on and I used the same mat on my bleeding cut is worrying me.
Is there any risk of HIV here from dried blood traces that may have been carried in on people's shoes?
What about other blood viruses such as hep c or b?
Shall I see a doctor about this? The cut itself doesn't need to be looked at but I am worried at the dirty towel I pressed against it.


Hi there,

Thank you for choosing the AIDS Vancouver Helpline as your source of information.

The HIV virus cannot survive in an open air environment. Even if the mat did somehow had the HIV virus on it, it would have died shortly after being in that open air environment. For a risk to exist, specific HIV positive fluids (vaginal/anal fluids, blood, semen) must come into direct contact with the blood stream of an HIV negative person.This is not the case here.

Other viruses, such as the hepatitis virus, can survive for longer periods in the open air environment. I suggest that you reach out to a medical professional and get tested

In health,

Moe, AIDS Vancouver Helpline Volunteer.