Covid 19 Spread by Aerosols
I wear a mask indoors and outdoors as well…here’s why. Studies have shown that Covid 19 is spread by aerosolized particles.
My spouse wants me to wear a mask when I go out for my walk. I’ve been resistant because I stay away from people. I even cross the street to ensure distance. However, her insistence on the gravity of the situation and the fact that Covid-19 can be aerosolized got me to doing some research.
Scientific studies show that the Covid 19 virus is spread by droplets and/or aerosolized particles.
The Canadian government’s website states,
SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, spreads from an infected person to others through respiratory droplets and aerosols when an infected person coughs, sneezes, sings, shouts, or talks. The droplets vary in size, from large droplets that fall to the ground rapidly (within seconds or minutes) near the infected person, to smaller droplets, sometimes called aerosols, which linger in the air under some circumstances.
So, what does that mean in lay terms? How long do aerosolized particles remain in the air and how far do they travel outdoors? I liken them to my experience with weed-filled cars passing me on the street when I’m out for a walk.
Once these cars, some competing with Cheech and Chong’s Up In Smoke, have passed the odour of weed wafting from them hangs in the air for an average of about 60 seconds or more. To top it off, most of the time those car’s windows are closed. The smell travels with the breeze for even longer thus it spreads over a considerable distance.
A similar happenstance takes place even when I’m sitting alone in my back yard as those same motorists smoke their way past. Even though I’m 60 feet (20 metres) from the edge of the road the odour permeates my nostrils within a few seconds of their passing.
Heck, the impact on your olfactory receptors from the simple act of someone passing gas somewhere away from you is proof enough of the ability of aerosolized particles to linger or travel, right?
That said, I suspect the tiny aerosolized Covid-19 particles follow similar patterns. So, as I see it, masks are a necessity indoors and are a good choice even outdoors when others are nearby.
Look, we’re experiencing a serious uptake in the numbers of new Covid-19 cases, the majority being variants of the original virus. These variants are more transmissible and the newer cases seem to be infecting younger segments of our population. Hospitalizations and admissions to ICU’s for Covid 19 are at an all-time high and stressing our health care system.
We all need to step up, bear the short-term, minor inconveniences and stay safe so our health and economy can have a chance to recover.
Here’s a page on the Canadian Government Website where you’ll find best practices and how to stay safe.
As for me, even though I dislike it, I’ll be wearing a mask when I head out for my walk. I believe it’s my responsibility to be considerate of, and to protect, others in my community.
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Peace, Health and Harmony
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