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Let's stop the sanitizing...


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I was taught during my medical training that colds were often spread through "fomites" or surfaces/touching. If there has been any good to come out of this Covid-19 pandemic I think it can be that we learned that transmission is through air droplet transmission, not fomites. The science is out there, and I wish the authorities would share more honestly what we now know. All of this "sanitizing" we now know is of little to no benefit.

 

https://www.nature.com/articles/d41586-021-00251-4

 

"Hundreds of studies of COVID-19 transmission have been published since the pandemic began, yet there is thought to be only one that reports transmission through a contaminated surface, by what it termed the snot–oral route. According to the report, a person with COVID-19 in China blew his nose with his hand and then pressed a button in his apartment building elevator. A second resident in the building then touched the same button and flossed with a toothpick immediately after, thereby transferring the virus from button to mouth12. But without genome sequences of the viruses infecting each person, transmission through another unknown person couldn’t be ruled out."

...

"Armed with a year’s worth of data about coronavirus cases, researchers say one fact is clear. It’s people, not surfaces, that should be the main cause for concern. Evidence from superspreading events, where numerous people are infected at once, usually in a crowded indoor space, clearly point to airborne transmission, says Marr. “You have to make up some really convoluted scenarios in order to explain superspreading events with contaminated surfaces,” she says."

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I mean, technically, another guy's tongue, dick, and other body parts are surfaces, right? ✌

 

I guess the "fomite" term is more definitive. If the studies and research were well-supported that the spread of COVID is mostly attributed to air droplet transmission and not through fomites, then perhaps sanitization might not deter the spread of COVID, but sanitization could be beneficial for things other than COVID - like disinfection, reduction of fungi (if applicable), or just the overall satisfaction of someone who might be OCD in having cleaned up something.

 

Regardless, if the research is accurate, sounds like folks should not be comforted by mere sanitizing, but really to just isolate and quarantine.

 

Or maybe I just like the smell of sanitized surfaces. ?‍♂️

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I actually think that the extra sanitizing we have been doing, along with wearing masks when in proximity to strangers, has helped reduce the common flu and colds so prevalent at this time of year.

 

So even if surface contamination is not a major route of COVID transmission, I would not say the extra precautions taken for hygienic reasons have been useless.

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I actually think that the extra sanitizing we have been doing, along with wearing masks...

Well, obviously the research has shown that the mask-wearing is extremely important, but on what basis do you "think" that the extra sanitizing has made any difference? Or do you just choose to believe whatever you want regardless of what the evidence suggests?

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Well, obviously the research has shown that the mask-wearing is extremely important, but on what basis do you "think" that the extra sanitizing has made any difference? Or do you just choose to believe whatever you want regardless of what the evidence suggests?

I look to all sources available to me to form my opinions about various subjects. On the subject of the common flu and colds this year, there is widespread evidence that incidence is much reduced, here in Canada, at least. There is also ample evidence that people are generally washing their hands more and sanitizing their environments as well to deal with the COVID pandemic.

 

Later we will undoubtedly learn about incidence of these other ailments this year but my sense is that we will see a marked reduction.

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I look to all sources available to me to form my opinions about various subjects. On the subject of the common flu and colds this year, there is widespread evidence that incidence is much reduced, here in Canada, at least. There is also ample evidence that people are generally washing their hands more and sanitizing their environments as well to deal with the COVID pandemic.

 

Later we will undoubtedly learn about incidence of these other ailments this year but my sense is that we will see a marked reduction.

And many more people got the flu shot this year too.

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I look to all sources available to me to form my opinions about various subjects. On the subject of the common flu and colds this year, there is widespread evidence that incidence is much reduced, here in Canada, at least. There is also ample evidence that people are generally washing their hands more and sanitizing their environments as well to deal with the COVID pandemic.

 

Later we will undoubtedly learn about incidence of these other ailments this year but my sense is that we will see a marked reduction.

???

Well, obviously there have been multiple changes going on simultaneously in 2020. One has to look at the studies regarding each of those changes individually in order to figure out which was/were the effective change(s). There have been almost countless studies on transmission, and the conclusion seems to be that it's the masking, distancing, and isolation that seem to make the difference. The article in my original post makes the point that there are multiple reasons to believe that sanitizing is not useful for Covid-19 in particular, or probably rhinoviruses as well. Sanitizing may make a difference for influenza viruses, and makes a huge difference for norovirus and other intestinal viruses.

This does not mean that keeping things clean and washing hands are useless. What it does mean is that in our efforts to reduce the spread of Covid-19, our energies should go into improving air circulation or other methods of reducing air droplets, rather than on sanitizing surfaces obsessively. I remember when this started, I was constantly disinfecting my hands if I touched the pin-pad at the supermarket (etc.), and I was constantly wiping down doors, telephones, etc. Given the research that's come out, I no longer do that (haven't been doing it for the last few months, even before I got vaccinated).

I wish that our advancing knowledge were better communicated to the press and the public by public health officials. I feel as if the public is being kept guessing as to what's important.

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I always used to come down with a cold or flu after flying on an international flight, have a great vacation and then be sick for a week or two when i got back - never felt good.

 

During the dramas with swine flu, I had to travel to New Zealand when my Mum Passed away, this was April 2009. The day I was due to fly home, my flight was delayed as the inbound service had a sick child on board. we were told by the Business Class manager that the delay was for the aircraft to be sanitised.

 

Get home a few days later get really really sick. You guessed it swine flu !!!

 

SInce then I have never had a cold or a flu. When I fly i use hand sanitizer, everything i touch i use sanitizer and wipes. So i get on the plane, i wipe down my seat belt, my arm rests, the entertainment controller etc etc etc.

 

When I go to the bathroom, and from Australia every where is a 3 -17 hour flight away, I do what I need to do, i wash with soap, i then grab a tissue or paper town to open the door, throw that in the trash. Go back to my seat and you guessed it - hand sanitise.

 

In places like Bali or Thailand I do the same after handling the money.

 

Yes May 2009 was the last time I got sick.

 

With Covid we are that much more aware, so this has become a standard procedure. I hot desk at work, so we do it all the time.

 

Rates of colds and flu‘s went down last winter, why because we are wearing masks and sanitising.

 

Something is working, so lets keep doing what we are doing until we are able to eradicate this virus

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...

Rates of colds and flu‘s went down last winter, why because we are wearing masks and sanitising....

To find out whether it's the masks, the stay-at-home orders, or the sanitizing which is/are the effective intervention(s) we can (1) speculate, (2) take a vote and/or see what other people believe, or (3) use the scientific method and let the facts guide our actions. Guess which method is the most helpful?

Edited by Unicorn
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To find out whether it's the masks, the stay-at-home orders, or the sanitizing which is/are the effective intervention(s) we can (1) speculate, (2) take a vote and/or see what other people believe, or (3) use the scientific method and let the facts guide our actions. Guess which method is the most helpful?

I take it sanitizing does not fit with your science-based approach.

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I take it sanitizing does not fit with your science-based approach.

The hypothesis that sanitizing reduces Covid-19 transmission has been systematically examined by many different groups of scientists, and the hypothesis has not panned out (in experiments done in multiple countries around the world). To disagree, you would have to explain why you disagree with the findings of the studies. An observation, such as "I sanitized my airplane seat 8 times and didn't get sick," can certainly generate a hypothesis, but the hypothesis must stand up to the scientific method/experimentation, before the hypothesis can be accepted as factual.

Edited by Unicorn
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The hypothesis that sanitizing reduces Covid-19 transmission has been systematically examined by many different groups of scientists, and the hypothesis has not panned out (in experiments done in multiple countries around the world). To disagree, you would have to explain why you disagree with the findings of the studies.

 

Agree that COVID 19, much like most viruses, do not live long outside of a natural host. However, I think we should be sanitizing surfaces more. In fact, throw out those alcohol wipes and start carrying a big soapy scrub brush because people are generally disgusting.

 

https://www.usatoday.com/story/tech/2019/02/26/your-smartphone-screen-probably-disgusting-heres-how-clean/2950106002/

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There was an article in Bloomberg Businessweek a few weeks ago that talked about this, in the context of buildings being overly sanitized to our detriment:

 

https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2020-12-16/covid-pandemic-microbiomes-could-be-key-to-stopping-spread-of-future-viruses

 

It's an interesting read. It's not so much saying to stop cleaning, but talking about how cleaning should be done and why the harsh disinfectants are the wrong approach.

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The hypothesis that sanitizing reduces Covid-19 transmission has been systematically examined by many different groups of scientists, and the hypothesis has not panned out (in experiments done in multiple countries around the world). To disagree, you would have to explain why you disagree with the findings of the studies. An observation, such as "I sanitized my airplane seat 8 times and didn't get sick," can certainly generate a hypothesis, but the hypothesis must stand up to the scientific method/experimentation, before the hypothesis can be accepted as factual.

 

Pre Covid that has worked for me !!!

 

As Covid is a virus that is spread like a flu or cold virus, some of it is airborne and some of it is on a surface. Considering that Covid lasts on a surface for up to 14 days , there has to be some benefit in wiping down surfaces, and hand sanitising.

 

The Airborne but is managed by the masks.

 

why do Dr and Nurses wear masks in theatre etc, why do the Japanese wear a mask when they have a cold ??

 

My medical people here in Sydney say that wearing a mask, and hand sanitising , wiping of surfaces is the best we can do at a ground level practical level.

 

I would prefer to do something than sit around wringing my hands and worrying about when i am going to catch it and die !!!!

 

there has to be a correlation between these actions and the actions of lock downs, border closures, not being able to travel, to congregate in groups, to socially distance.

 

In Australia we have lost about 1000 people in a 25 million population, those numbers are way down on what happened in the USA the UK and EU, because people chose to make their own decisions and not wear masks and not socially distance and etc etc etc.

 

take what you want from that !!! But that’s a scientific experiment that has some good results, it has to be considered as helpful !!!!

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I vote in favor of sanitizing.

As Isaac from The Orville said, "I think you're confusing opinion with knowledge." Whether sanitizing helps or not is simply a factual question, the answer of which we can discover through the scientific method. Facts are not determined by "voting" or thumbs up emoticons. Obviously, anyone can form opinions on anything. Being in a "majority" doesn't make false beliefs factual.

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I vote in favor of sanitizing.

As Isaac from The Orville said, "I think you're confusing opinion with knowledge." Whether sanitizing helps or not is simply a factual question, the answer of which we can discover through the scientific method. Facts are not determined by "voting" or thumbs up emoticons. Obviously, anyone can form opinions on anything. Being in a "majority" doesn't make false beliefs factual.

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We're not entirely sure why flu season is so low this year, but this video seems to do a very good job of explaining possible scientific theories around it.

 

Interesting hypotheses. I did note that one hypothesis which he did NOT mention as a possible reason for the decrease in respiratory infections was the sanitizing. There are clearly many things going on at once, and thankfully there are many scientists and lots of $$ going into finding out what works and what doesn't. Our knowledge on this has really been expanding quite quickly.

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