# 19 - Outfoxing The Coronavirus Enemy

April 28, 2020

 

Coronavirus or Covid-19, as is now well-publicized, is a new and very contagious virus.  According to Vox.com (an open source reporting network), Covid-19 spreads much faster than the flu virus and also has a higher hospitalization rate and death rate, based on what is known so far.

 

Clearly we need to protect ourselves and those we care about.  There are two common habits we can personally change that should dramatically reduce the odds of our contracting Covid-19 and/or unwittingly passing it on to someone else.  These instructions seem logical and have been mentioned by the “experts”, but THE WHY has not been explained to our satisfaction, so we have researched it a bit more.

 

Habit # 1:           WASH  YOUR  HANDS

 

We keep hearing that one of the greatest protections from the harmful coronavirus is just thoroughly washing our hands often with soap and water.  That almost sounds too simple.  Can something as ordinary as soap and water kill this deadly enemy?  How can that be ?

 

It turns out that the fats in the soap “pull the virus apart, you make it soluble in water, and it disintegrates.”  Then the harmless shards of virus get flushed down the drain, according to Palli Thordarson, a chemistry professor at the University of New South Wales. That takes a little time to happen, he explains, which is why you need to spend at least 20 seconds washing your hands.  Because human skin is wrinkly, it takes a while for soap to penetrate into all the tiny folds and demolish the viruses that lurk there.  Also the chemical reaction needs time to do its work.  Thordarson says that 20 seconds should do the job.

 

We couldn’t ask for anything easier than this.  Please make sure to use this effective weapon against Covid-19.  Do this especially if you have been in public places, around potentially sick people or where you have been touching something that could have been handled by others such as door knobs, grocery store carts, ATM machines, coins & paper money, gas pumps, etc.  You get the idea.

 

Habit # 2:        STOP  TOUCHING  YOUR  FACE

 

This may be a bit more difficult unconscious habit to change, because people tend to rub sleepy eyes, scratch an itch or lick a finger so automatically we don’t think before it happens.  But if we understand what is at stake and what we can do about it we just might make the effort.  One of the primary ways the Covid-19 virus transfers from an infected person (the host) who may appear perfectly normal, is when that person touches an ordinary object (like a door-knob, counter top, etc.).  Then we come along, touch that same surface and later innocently touch our face (particularly eyes, nose or mouth) and the deed is done.  The virus goes from the host to that object, to your hands, and into your body through your eyes, nose or mouth.

 

Obviously stopping this habit is not easy but there’s a lot at stake here.  You may go home and by the same process infect someone in your family unintentionally.  If that person is elderly, has a compromised immune system or is pregnant, the outcome could be serious.  Even people not as much “at risk” can get a nasty sick spell.   

 

Please make a concerted effort to change these two habits.  Your health will be better protected going forward whatever flu or other bugs come along in the future.  That's a good thing!

 

Another thoughtful thing you can do is find someone to share this information with and ask them to do the same.  Pass it along.

 

Our sources for this blog post are :

  • www.vox.com/science-and-health/2020/3/11/21173187/coronavirus-covid-19-hand-washing-sanitizer-compared-soap-is-dope

  • Johns Hopkins Medicine (www. Hopkinsmedicine.org/health/conditions-and-diseases/coronavirus-disease-2019vs-th-flu)

  • www.health.com/condition/infectious-diseases/coronavirus-worse-than-flu

  • www.vox.com/science-and-health/2020/3/18/21184992/coronavirus-covid-19-flu-comparison-chart.

 

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    Dick  Nehls

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