Learn about coronavirus prevention with a face mask for germs, how to make homemade medical face masks, how to use natural disinfectants like UV light, vinegar and alcohol to kill germs like bacteria and viruses in the house.
Every few years, humankind comes across a pathogen that has the potential to wipe out millions of people. From the plague to the Spanish flu, Ebola, H1N1, SARS, MERS and now the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak.
The primary concern that everyone on Earth now faces is how to avoid getting infected with the new COVID-19 coronavirus.
In this article, you’ll learn why you must wear a face mask when you go out, how to make your own DIY protective face mask, how to kill germs on hands and in the home, and how to kill flu germs on surfaces.
Experts are still unsure about the COVID-19 coronavirus mode of transmission but scientists have identified genetic markers of the virus in airborne droplets, many with diameters smaller than one-ten-thousandth of an inch, adding to growing evidence that the novel coronavirus can spread through the air.
Droplets that small, which are expelled by breathing and talking, can remain aloft and be inhaled by others, so it strongly suggests that there is potential for airborne transmission and that current coronavirus precautions may be insufficient to prevent coronavirus transmission.
3 Common Sense Tips To Avoid Catching Germs
In an uncertain and ever-changing world, there are a lot of things that are beyond your control, so it’s better to concern yourself with the things you can control, such as how to avoid germs like bacteria and viruses.
Here are some coronavirus isolation precautions and common sense ways to avoid catching germs:
1. Wear a reusable, washable face mask or plastic face shield for germs
Many airborne pathogens are spread through droplets released by sneezing or coughing. Don’t bet your life on other people caring enough to cover their mouths or noses.
An important coronavirus prevention measure is to wear a protective face mask or scarf to avoid inhaling germ-carrying droplets. According to this article in The Guardian, masks are effective at capturing droplets, which is a main transmission route of coronavirus.
If you’re likely to be in close contact with someone infected, a face mask for germs cuts the chance of the disease being passed on. If you’re showing coronavirus symptoms or have tested positive for the virus, wearing a mask can also protect others.
Will wearing a coronavirus mask help?
Unfortunately, mixed messages from the experts have stigmatized the wearing of masks. According to the Lancet, one important reason to discourage widespread use of face masks is to preserve limited supplies for professional use in health-care settings, which is a valid point when supplies are scarce.
The coronavirus incubation period is somewhere between 2 to 14 days after exposure, according to the CDC. Recent evidence suggests 25% of people infected with the new coronavirus don’t have any symptoms or fall ill, but can still transmit the illness to others.
The latest research on coronavirus mode of transmission shows that coronavirus can be spread not just by sneezes or coughs, but also just by talking, or possibly even just breathing and, under certain conditions, viral droplets could travel as far as 27 feet!
Live coronavirus can also persist in the air in aerosol form and it’s possible that aerosolized coronavirus droplets can hang in the air and potentially infect someone who walks by later.
That’s why community transmission might be reduced if everyone (including infected people who are asymptomatic and contagious) wears face masks.
According to Wired Magazine, when you look at photos of Americans during the 1918 influenza pandemic, one feature stands out above all else: face masks. Fabric, usually white gauze, covers nearly every face.
Across the country, public health experts recommended universal mask-wearing, and some cities ordered residents to wear them under penalty of fine or imprisonment.
Experts have proposed that widespread use of face masks is one of the many reasons why China, Japan, South Korea, and Taiwan have controlled outbreaks of coronavirus much more effectively than coronavirus in the US and Europe.
In the US and Europe, the number of coronavirus cases and the coronavirus death toll is now higher than in Asia, an outcome that could possibly have been prevented by taking coronavirus precautions such as wearing a face mask.
According to Tom Inglesby, Director of The Johns Hopkins Center for Health Security, members of the general public should wear non-medical fabric face masks when going out in public in one additional societal effort to slow the spread of the virus down.
From a practical and societal point of view, surgical or self-made masks, if handled properly, will, at worst, not hurt and may, at best, help. They do not have to be n95 face masks.
These simpler, inexpensive masks may suffice to help to flatten the curve, perhaps a bit, perhaps substantially. Importantly: using them will not take away valuable N95 respirator masks from health care workers.
The CDC now advises that cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure to slow the spread of the coronavirus in the US.
In this video, Surgeon General, Dr Jerome Adams, shares ways to create your own face-covering in a few easy steps.
The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidelines.
Want to learn how to make a homemade medical face mask or a DIY protective face mask with filter pocket to cover your face when going out?
In the video below, a doctor explains how to make the safest face mask that utilizes a HEPA filter, which is much, much better than a cotton mask.
You can also buy durable injection-moulded DIY face mask frames for health care providers, elderly individuals, and those with the greatest need. Just add your own filter media (numerous options) to build an improvised face mask.
This family 6-pack of face mask frames features two of each size: Large for the average male adult, Medium for the average female adult, and small for children.
Face shields may be preferable to face masks
Happyshield is a new open-source origami-style face mask designed for fast and cheap mass production. You can make it at home.
Happyshield is a new open-source origami style face mask designed for fast and cheap mass production pic.twitter.com/Ppn4Mhz14j
— Mashable (@mashable) May 11, 2020
If you don’t have access to face masks or face shields, then tie a scarf around your face when you go out. Here are some tips to tie a scarf properly.
When you return home, soak the scarf or face mask in 20% vinegar and wash it in soapy hot water before drying it. Keep a number of scarves or face masks handy so that you have enough for everyday use.
2. Wash your hands frequently with regular soap & water
While most people are making a beeline for the hand sanitizer, they don’t realize that frequent handwashing with regular soap is the best way to prevent the spread of germs.
But does alcohol kill germs? Does rubbing alcohol kill bacteria on the skin, and does alcohol kill flu viruses? Yes, in fact, the CDC advises using a hand sanitizer with at least 70% alcohol if you cannot wash your hands, as it can quickly reduce the number of microbes on hands in some situations.
Alcohol can kill viruses, including influenza and coronaviruses, by breaking down the lipid membrane surrounding the virus and inactivating it. However, viruses that lack this envelope, such as norovirus, may not be inactivated by alcohol.
Unfortunately, hand sanitizers don’t eliminate all types of germs, so don’t depend on them too much. Natural hand sanitizers made with ingredients such as essential oils and aloe, while good for your skin, cannot guarantee that they kill all germs and viruses.
Hand sanitizer dangers include alcohol poisoning from swallowing alcohol-based hand sanitizers, so don’t use hand sanitizer for kids as they’re likely to put their hands in their mouths. Also, avoid products that contain triclosan.
Instead, help your child understand the importance of covering their mouths and handwashing to help prevent the spread of germs and viruses with the children’s book, Germs Are Not for Sharing.
3. Disinfect frequently-touched surfaces daily
According to this article in the BBC, viruses like COVID-19 can be spread in tiny droplets released from the nose and mouth of an infected person as they cough.
Some studies on other coronaviruses, including SARS and MERS, found they can survive on metal, glass and plastic for as long as 9 days unless they are properly disinfected. Some can even hang around for up to 28 days in low temperatures.
According to the CDC, disinfecting frequently-touched surfaces daily is key in preventing COVID-19’s spread.
— Fast Company (@FastCompany) May 3, 2020
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How To Kill Bacteria And Viruses In The House
Want to know what kills viruses, how to kill flu viruses, and how to kill coronavirus on surfaces? There are many natural and eco-friendly ways to kill germs and viruses in the home by making use of natural disinfectants.
If you want to learn what kills germs and bacteria, what kills the flu virus, and how to kill the flu virus in houses, read on.
Use UV Light To Kill Germs
Does ultraviolet (UV) light kill germs? Yes, far-UVC germ-killing light kills 99.9% of germs and bacteria, including dangerous viruses like MRSA, H1N1 and Ebola, as well as drug-resistant bacteria within just a few seconds.
How does UV light kill germs? On the UV light spectrum, there are UV-A, B, and C lights, but UV-C is the light that kills germs.
Ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) is a disinfection method that uses short-wavelength ultraviolet (UV-C) light to kill or inactivate microorganisms by destroying nucleic acids and disrupting their DNA, leaving them unable to perform vital cellular functions.
UVGI is already used in a variety of applications, such as food, air, and water purification. In fact, the medical and scientific community already know how to get rid of germs in the air with UV light and regularly use UV light to sterilize hospital rooms and labs.
Scientific studies such as the paper, Far-UVC Light: A new tool to control the spread of airborne-mediated microbial diseases, have shown that far-UVC light efficiently inactivates flu viruses with about the same efficiency as conventional germicidal UV light and can be a very efficient virus killer.
According to the review article, Can UV Light Fight the Spread of Influenza? far-UVC light may offer a low-cost solution to eradicating airborne viruses in indoor public spaces.
Far-UVC light has a very limited range and cannot penetrate through the outer dead-cell layer of human skin or the tear layer in the eye, so it’s not a human health hazard. But because viruses and bacteria are much smaller than human cells, far-UVC light can reach their DNA and kill them.
So if you want to know how to kill germs in the air, Far-UVC lights are the best natural germ killer as they are relatively inexpensive and are likely to be effective against all airborne microbes, even newly emerging strains.
This UV germ killer light can kill germs on practically any surface, even on porous surfaces. Today, you can buy a number of portable UV sanitizing devices that claim to kill 99.9 per cent of bacteria and viruses. Here are some of them:
1. Ultraviolet Disinfection Lamp Professional UV-C Sanitizer Wand
If you want a germ-killing light device to kill viruses on surfaces, get the Ultraviolet Disinfection Lamp Professional UV-C Sanitizer Wand, a Far-UVC sanitizing portable device that kills 99.9% of germs, bacteria, mold, and viruses effectively.
This eco-friendly, germ-killing light device can help you sanitize and sterilize an area very quickly, as well as destroy odour-causing bacteria and mold in an instant. This scientifically-proven ultraviolet wand to kill germs is laboratory tested for effectiveness and requires no chemicals whatsoever.
The Ultraviolet Disinfection Lamp Professional UV-C Sanitizer Wand kills germs and bacteria on hard surfaces in the office, at home, grocery stores and all public places. Super easy to use, the hand-held UV wand can go everywhere with you. It is great for sterlizing bathrooms, kitchens and hospitals and can be used on pets, beds, and all toys.
2. UV Germicidal Lamps
Want to know how to get rid of germs in your house? Install an all-purpose UVC clean lamp in every room. You can use it to sterilize the bedroom, quilt, pillow, bath towel, bathroom, toilet, kitchen, HVAC duct, and more.
Note: This device emits UVC light, not far-UVC light, and is harmful to people, pets and plants, so you must remove people, pets and plants from the room when this lamp is on. Also, turn off the bulb before approaching the room, do not look at the bulb when it is on and do not expose your eyes and skin to the UVC light.
3. UV Air Purifiers
There are a number of HEPA air purifiers that also use UV light to sanitize the air entering a room. Most of them are designed to kill airborne viruses and germs such as influenza, staph, rhinovirus, provide cleaner air and reduce household odors caused by bacteria, pets, and cooking fumes.
Here are some of the best HEPA air purifiers that use UV to kill disease-causing germs:
4. HoMedics UV-Clean Portable Sanitizer
The HoMedics UV-Clean Portable Sanitizer uses powerful UV-C LED technology to keep your most frequently used items clean and sanitized while at home or on the go with.
You can keep it in your purse, backpack, suitcase, gym bag, or diaper bag and use it to kill up to 99.9% of bacteria and viruses 10 times faster than any other sanitizer.
With 4 UV-C Germicidal LED’s at 18 cycles per charge, it completely surrounds your belongings for sanitizing and disinfecting both sides of your item in just 1 minute with rechargeable LED’s that last for thousands of uses.
The HoMedics UV-Clean Portable Sanitizer is designed to fit a variety of items such as keys, jewelry, eyeglasses, remotes, makeup brushes, and is a vacation and travel essential or great for use at home or the office.
5. HoMedics UV-Clean Phone Sanitizer
The HoMedics UV-Clean Phone Sanitizer will keep your phone clean by utilizing UV-C LED sanitizing technology. Transport it in your purse, backpack, suitcase or gym bag to kill up to 99.9% of bacteria and viruses.
With 2 rechargeable LED’s that last for thousands of uses, the UV-C Germicidal LED’s at 70 cycles per charge completely surrounds your phone for optimal sanitizing in just 30 seconds per side.
The lighting position ensures maximum coverage and effectiveness and has an advanced safety lock to prevent UV exposure.
The HoMedics UV-Clean Phone Sanitizer is designed to fit a variety of phone sizes including larger models like Google Pixel 3. Carry it on vacation or use at home or the office.
6. Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer
The Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer kills 99%+ of bacteria and viruses on pacifiers and bottle nipples in 59 seconds using UV-C light. It safely kills Staph, E. coli, RSV, Salmonella, Kleb, Influenza (flu), eliminates odor-causing bacteria and sterilizes without using harmful chemicals.
The Munchkin Portable UV Sterilizer is child safe and the UV light auto shuts-off when the lid is opened. It can be powered by most USB power sources such as portable power banks, car chargers, laptops or USB wall charger. It also works with 3 AA batteries.
7. DUV Toothbrush Sanitizer
Sterilize your toothbrush on the go with this Portable Toothbrush Sanitizer with Advanced Deep DUV-C Sanitizing Technology. Deep UVC-LED is a new generation clean light source with a sanitizing efficiency of up to 99.99%.
Just place your toothbrush head in the case and press the power button for sterilization to start. In 3 minutes, the toothbrush is cleaned and sanitized.
The DUV Toothbrush Sanitizer is suitable for various toothbrush heads including electric toothbrush (except Oral B). It is portable, easy to use and clean and rechargeable via USB.
Use Vinegar Instead Of Bleach
Does vinegar kill germs? The answer is yes! Vinegar can kill germs such as bacteria, viruses and yeast. Research has shown it can be effective against some bacteria and viruses, including the flu. However, it does not kill dangerous bacteria like staphylococcus.
Vinegar is also biodegradable and can also be used as a safer alternative to bleach for some applications, such as cleaning. Concentrated (20-30%) vinegar has been widely used to replace many harmful and expensive commercial cleaning products.
You can use vinegar to kill flu germs on fabric, so if you want a homemade counter cleaner that kills germs, 20% industrial strength white vinegar is the perfect natural disinfectant for cleaning and laundry.
Does Rubbing Alcohol Kill Germs?
Does rubbing alcohol kill germs? Yes, rubbing alcohol naturally kills bacteria and viruses, but experts don’t recommend using it to disinfect your home.
Although the CDC advises using an alcohol solution with at least 70% alcohol for disinfecting surfaces, the alcohol evaporates too quickly, and items really need to be submerged in isopropyl alcohol for 10 minutes to do its thing.
Remember, that alcohol is highly flammable and storing a lot of it or using it too liberally can create a fire hazard. Also, remember not to mix these cleaning products.
Now that you know how to get rid of germs in the house, and more specifically, how to kill flu germs without using harmful chemicals, use these common-sense tips and best germ-killer technologies to stay safe at home and when you travel.
Disclaimer: The information contained on this web site is presented for the purpose of educating people. Nothing contained on this web site should be construed nor is intended to be used for medical diagnosis or treatment. It should not be used in place of the advice of your physician or other qualified health care provider. Should you have any healthcare-related questions, please call or see your physician or other qualified health care provider promptly. Always consult with your physician or other qualified health care provider before embarking on a new treatment, diet, or fitness program.
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