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I have a question about whether corona virus is airborne
Hi @samyhaly, welcome to Mayo Clinic Connect. You ask a good question. The Center for Disease Control explains the spread of COVID-19 as follows:
The virus is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person.
– Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
– Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
Understanding how it spreads may it easier to know how to protect yourself, for example:
– stay at least 6 feet apart from people
– cover sneezes and coughs
– wash your hands with soap, often
Samy, what measures are you taking to protect yourself? Are you able to stay home or do you have to leave the house to work?
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Thank you for your fast and detailed reply. I do stay home most of the time, but I have, of course, to go out for shopping the necessary things. I also go to my college, for few hours, to supervise urgent work with my students.
I know the safety measures being reported but like Samy, I'm beginning to wonder if the virus has mutated and is becoming air borne. Videos of city workers spraying streets has raised this question for me as well.
@feisty76 The latest information from epidemiologists still says droplet spread from person to person. Their opinions on street spraying are that it is unnecessary, and probably ineffective. My opinion is that cities are doing it so they are answering the demand by the public to "do something." But spraying sidewalks and street signs – who has direct contact with them? As far as I can find, there is no evidence that spraying something in the air can "wipe out" any droplets floating there.
Mayo's Dr Poland still advises handwashing and isolation for staying well.
Thanks for that info. Sue. Surely most people are aware to be cautious with their shoe soles but decades ago when our city sprayed DDT for insects the spray went high into the air. The video clips I saw of them spraying the streets and street signs seemed at least odd. Sounds reasonable that some places are attempting to "demonstrate that they are doing something" but I agree it does sound like a waste.
I agree, @sueinmn. It may be a response from some municipalities to demonstrate that they are doing something. @fiesty76 you can read more in this discussion:
– Spraying Disinfectant: What are the best ways to clean? https://connect.mayoclinic.org/discussion/spraying-disinfectant/
@samyhaly does your supervisory role at the college require you to attend to students in person? Would videoconferencing be a possible alternative?
Thank you, Colleen, for this helpful article from Science on spraying disinfectant outdoors. Over the years, I've often wondered if those summers as a child when we all scampered outside to watch and play in the clouds of DDT being sprayed in the neighborhood were responsible for my compromised respiratory system. Certainly now I am very conscious of using or being in any area where aerosols are being used.
@samyhaly This is the latest on face masks. I have figured all along that they were useful but they were being downplayed, presumably because they wanted the limited number available to be there for healthcare workers, which is totally understandable. The Asian countries where face masks are being worn by virtually everyone have had more success in battling this so now our country is realizing it also. Homemade masks are better than nothing.
Contentandwell, I have thought the same as you about use of masks being downplayed…the word could have gone out to make the "homemade ones" much sooner. I appreciate conserving the regulars for those 1st responders but have been seriously aggravated that "those in the know" were suggesting they were not effective….doesn't take a mental giant to agree with what you wrote: " Homemade masks are better than nothing".
@fiesty76 Absolutely. Being a post-transplant patient it has always been suggested to me to wear a mask when flying or in a crowded place. I saw the doctor of infectious diseases for vaccines before our intended trip to the Caribbean and she emphasized that I should wear a mask.
To rephrase your comment, it doesn't take a rocket scientist, and also I agree that the people on the front line should definitely have priority.
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