Category: Prevention

Rings and bracelets during COVID19, it’s time to take them off

We all know by now how important hand washing is, particularly during these times with the Coronavirus epidemic.
As everyone is doing their best to avoid catching the virus, we’ve received many questions about wearing wristwatches and rings, and whether they might have a negative health impact.
Can rings and other jewelry be carriers of the COVID-19?

According to many experts, Coronavirus survives further on metal surfaces, like our rings, watches, and bracelets. Parts of the infection can remain under the jewelry, even if you wash your hands with rings on. Even though it is not yet clear that these residual amounts can affect the transmission of infection, we suggest that you do not tempt fate and remove your jewelry during this period or regularly wash them with warm water and soap.

Soapy’s advice for wearing rings and bracelets during COVID-19:
1) Do not wipe expensive stones and metals with an antiseptic, this may negatively affect your favorite jewelry.
2) Weigh the pros and cons of wearing your accessories during a COVID-19 infection – consider refraining for wearing jewelry for now.
3) If you choose to continue wearing your bling – be extra meticulous with cleaning them no less than twice a day.

Take care of yourself and keep the distance!

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Staying at home during COVID-19? This wellness guide is just for you!

Coronavirus has strongly affected the lives of all of us and today a large number of people are forced to stay at home. Our company has prepared a small guide on how to stay mentally and physically healthy these days!

Remote work
Remote work during COVID-19

It is now difficult to find a person who would not be somehow affected by the influence of this virus. The daily routine has changed a lot for many people. You no longer need to go to work or hold meetings with your colleagues (except for remote communication of course), but since for many of us this routine is completely new, here are some simple tips on how to maintain your mental and physical health!

Time plan

A simple regimen can significantly save your inner strength and calm in your family; a daily plan is especially important for young children.

Whether you work from home or just quarantine, you should have a clear daily routine. When are breakfast, lunch, and dinner? When is the time for playing with children and when you watch movies and TV shows? Get up in the morning, do your exercises and cook yourself a nutritious breakfast. Do not forget to get out of your pajamas, so it will be easier for you to go into working condition. Try to divide space into the working space and everything else. Try not to work in bed or in front of the TV, as this can distract attention and increase anxiety. Proper posture is up to you and your chair, so provide yourself with an ergonomic workspace – you don’t want back pain.

Proper nutrition

Work at home can negatively affect our nutritional schedule. Still when the refrigerator is so close! Frequent snacks can completely change your normal diet. If you still allow yourself small snacks, then they should be nutritious: nuts, dried fruits, and sliced vegetables. This way you can have a snack without bad feelings and at the same time, you get a large portion of vitamins and other important elements.

Drink water

If you only drink tea and coffee, you might get dehydrated. Experts recommend drinking water, not soft drinks, to fight thirst and restore water balance. After a cup of tea containing caffeine, nutritionists advise drinking another glass of water.

The caffeine contained in coffee leaches calcium from the body and interferes with its absorption. Half a liter of water improves metabolism by 30%, favorably affects digestion and the functioning of all organs. A lot of water is also good for your skin’s condition.

Exercise

Warm-up allows you to bring to working condition those muscle groups that in the near future will have to work during the day. The simplest example of a warm-up is felt every morning immediately after waking up. Almost involuntary sipping prepares the body to move to a vertical position, spreading and slightly warming up the muscles of the arms, legs and straightening the spine. It is important to do a small warm-up in the morning and to make pauses in work in front of the computer. Exercise will relieve stress and help you stay fit even without going to the gym. You can also download mobile apps to help you do the exercises correctly.

Get enough sleep

Sleep is critical for keeping yourself healthy. Although it may seem that you can stay awake all night, breaking your sleep habits can also endanger your immune system. Try to maintain your normal sleep pattern or improve it. Get seven to eight hours of sleep if working from home. This will not only strengthen your immune system but also improve your mood and productivity throughout the day.

Wash your hands more often

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going to the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.

Soap and water are the best options if hands are visibly dirty. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day

High touch surfaces include counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables. Also, clean any surfaces that may have blood, stool, or body fluids on them. Use a household cleaning spray or wipe, according to the label instructions. Labels contain instructions for safe and effective use of the cleaning product including precautions you should take when applying the product, such as wearing gloves and making sure you have good ventilation during the use of the product.

Pro tip: Give special attention to the entrance of the house/flat. It has to be separate from the other rooms as much as possible.

Assure that everybody: 

  • Takes off their shoes at the entrance
  • Makes laundry more often
  • Does dishes more frequently – do not leave piles of dishes in the sink
  • Takes a good shower with soap

*Steps 6 & 7 are taken from the CDC. Full information can be found here.

**Editor’s Note: The information in this article is intended for your educational use only; it does not necessarily reflect the opinions of the Soapy; and is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health providers with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition and before undertaking any diet, supplement, fitness, or other health programs.

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Soapy decides to allow it’s employees to work remotely

Soapy decides to allow its employees to work from home, but still fights Covid-19 in the front!

Our CEO Max Simonovsky decided to allow employees at Soapy to work remotely. This decision was made 10 days ago (March 5th).

Even though we are working remotely, our team was never more united in trying to prevent morbidity! 

This is a necessary step to keep all of them away from a chance of getting infected by Coronavirus. Some employees need to go through public places that are not safe anymore. 

Soapy will provide its customers with a high level of service even these days. We will ensure that all our units work properly to help our customers to maintain a high level of hand-hygiene. 

We call other companies to take this step as they in charge of their employees’ safety and health.

Please do not hesitate to reach us out for any type of information, soon we will post a guide of what else can help beside Hand Hygiene.

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Calcalist Tech: This Startup Wants to Fight Coronavirus With Soap and Water

Soapy Care develops smart sinks that incorporate computer vision analytics and IoT technologies to help people wash their hands more efficiently

As fears surrounding the coronavirus continue to grow and the number of people forced into home-quarantine rises, Israeli startup Soapy Care Ltd. is aiming to halt the spread of the virus by helping people wash their hands more efficiently.

Founded in 2018 and based in Rehovot in central Israel, smart hygiene startup Soapy Care develops smart sinks that incorporate computer vision analytics and Internet of things (IoT) technologies, Max Simonovsky, the company’s co-founder and CEO said in a Monday interview with Calcalist.

The smart sinks are autonomous and replace traditional sinks, Simonovsky said. Soapy Care’s sinks can be programmed with different settings, including the amount of time the water runs or the precise amount of soap or sanitizer dispensed, in accordance with where the smart sinks are situated, be it at restaurants, hospitals, retirement homes, daycares, or in private homes, Simonovsky said.

While the company suggests using specific types of soaps for better results, their sinks can be used with any standard soap, he said.

The idea for the smart sinks arose a few years ago when Simonovsky’s son, who was two years old at the time, told him he does not think handwashing is important given that some of the sinks at his daycare do not work properly.

Since the coronavirus outbreak, the company has dropped its prices for customers in hard-hit areas, such as China and South Korea, to help halt the spread of the virus, he said. The outbreak has led to a mass increase in the demand for Soapy Care’s smart sinks, Simonovsky added.

Soapy Care’s technology can be found at restaurants, factories, and daycares in countries including Israel, the U.S., Angola, and India, he said. The company has raised more than $1 million to date and employs a team of 22 people.

Source: Calcalist Tech

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Want to protect yourself from Coronavirus? So first, make your working environment safe!

How much time do we all spend at work, shaking our hands with friends or colleagues, using shared bathrooms or eating together? The answer is enough! Enough time to be exposed to the environment, where Coronavirus can be beaten if your employer will act right.
Coronavirus Preventation - Hand Washing Hands

We are at Soapy gathered simple rules/actions that you can advise your employer to implement, so that your workplace will be safe and healthy.

Rule #1
Everyone is washing their hands properly for at least 20 seconds.
Action #1
The employer needs to assure that the workplace is sparkly clean. Bathrooms, toilets, and kitchens should get additional attention. These places should have appropriate posters that explain all aspects of proper hand-washing procedures. See the poster below:
Post in Hebrew and Russian can be found here.
Rule #2
Everyone should practice correct coughing and sneezing etiquette (cover your mouth and nose entirely with a tissue or your upper sleeve).
Action #2
The employer needs to provide disposable wipes so that commonly used surfaces (for example, doorknobs, keyboards, remote controls, desks) can be wiped down by employees before each use.
Rule #3
Sick employees shouldn’t return to work until their temperature has stayed below 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit (37.8 degrees Celsius) for at least 24 hours, without the help of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicine, the CDC said.
Action #3
The employer needs to give an opportunity to work from home for people who already ill or just came from countries that were listed as high-risk.
If you are an employer, you can maintain the right hygiene routine of your emloyees just by adding an ECO – smart hygiene station that ensures everyone washes their hands properly. Order it here.
Source: CNN
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CNN – The best prevention against the coronavirus is still washing your hands

(CNN)When it comes to novel coronavirus protection, face masks are futile. There isn’t a vaccine yet. So the best way to prevent transmission of the novel coronavirus is washing your hands — thoroughly — with soap and water, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
And yes, there’s a right way to wash your hands. It’s something of an art form — a timed, multistep process that can involve some light singing.
Here’s the CDC’s official hand-washing how-to. All you need to follow along is a sink and soap.
Step 1
Wet your hands with clean, running water. Then, turn off the tap and soap up your hands. Soap is more effective at removing germs than water alone.
Step 2
Work the soap into a lather by rubbing your hands together. Lather soap onto the backs of your hands, in between your fingers and under your nails. Lathering causes friction, which strips pesky germs and dirt from the skin. Be sure to get into the nooks and crannies, too — germs lurk there.
Source CNN
Step 3
Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Sing or hum “Happy Birthday” twice through to keep time. There’s no magic number, but washing your hands for at least 20 seconds has been shown to remove more microbes than washing for shorter periods does. Singing “Happy Birthday” is just a fun way to make sure you’re scrubbing long enough.
Step 4
Rinse your hands well under clean, running water. You’ve lifted the germs from your hands. Clean water flushes them off.
Step 5
Dry your hands using a clean towel or air-dry them (or a bit of both). Wet hands easily transfer viruses. Drying them off lessens that risk.
Original publication: link
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BLOOMBERG: How to Avoid Coronavirus on Flights | Forget Masks, Says Top Airline Doctor

Forget face masks and rubber gloves.

The best way to avoid the coronavirus is frequent hand washing, according to a medical adviser to the world’s airlines.

The virus can’t survive long on seats or armrests, so physical contact with another person carries the greatest risk of infection on a flight, said David Powell, a physician and medical adviser to the International Air Transport Association. Masks and gloves do a better job of spreading bugs than stopping them, he said.    

As concern mounts about the scale of the outbreak, carriers from United Airlines Holdings Inc. to Cathay Pacific Airways Ltd. have scrapped thousands of flights to China. Here is an edited transcript from an interview with Powell. IATA represents about 290 airlines and more than 80% of global air traffic.

Q: Is there a risk of becoming contaminated with the virus on a plane?

A: The risk of catching a serious viral infection on an aircraft is low. The air supply to a modern airliner is very different from a movie theater or an office building. The air is a combination of fresh air and recirculated air, about half each. The recirculated air goes through filters of the exact same type that we use in surgical operating theaters. That supplied air is guaranteed to be 99.97% (or better) free of viruses and other particles. So the risk, if there is one, does not come from the supplied air. It comes from other people.  

Q: What are the chances of getting the virus by touching the seats, armrest or any of the objects on a plane?

A: Viruses and other microbes like to live on living surfaces like us. Just shaking hands with somebody will be a greater risk by far than some dry surface that has no biological material on it. The survival of viruses on surfaces isn’t great, so it’s believed that normal cleaning, and then the extra cleaning in the event that someone was discovered to be contagious, is the appropriate procedure. Will people stop getting together inside an airplane? I would respond by asking: Will I stop going to the movies, or sports games, or concerts or conferences? I don’t think so.

Q: What’s important if you are on a plane to ensure you don’t get infected?

A: Hand hygiene — because contrary to what people think, the hands are the way that these viruses most efficiently spread. Top of the list is frequent hand washing, hand sanitizing, or both. Avoid touching your face. If you cough or sneeze, it’s important to cover your face with a sleeve. Better yet, a tissue to be disposed of carefully, and then sanitizing the hands afterward. Washing your hands and drying them is the best procedure. When that’s not easy to do, alcohol-based sanitizer is a good second-best.  

Q: Does wearing masks and gloves help prevent infections?

A: First of all, masks. There’s very limited evidence of benefit, if any, in a casual situation. Masks are useful for those who are unwell to protect other people from them. But wearing a mask all the time will be ineffective. It will allow viruses to be transmitted around it, through it and worse still, if it becomes moist it will encourage the growth of viruses and bacteria. Gloves are probably even worse, because people put on gloves and then touch everything they would have touched with their hands. So it just becomes another way of transferring micro-organisms. And inside the gloves, your hands get hot and sweaty, which is a really good environment for microbes to grow.  

Q: Is shutting borders the answer to containing the spread of the virus?  

A: One thing that’s changed in the world is the ability for infections to travel rapidly from one location to another and it’s true that aviation is part of that. At the same time, aviation is essential to dealing with outbreaks like this. And this is why we have collaboration with the World Health Organization and IATA that’s been in place for several years. If countries just shut down during disease outbreaks, as happened in west Africa with Ebola, that can make things much worse. During that outbreak, the country struggled, WHO couldn’t get their people in, they couldn’t get biological samples out. The economic impact of being shut off made things worse. General travel bans can make things worse. It can encourage people to travel in secret, which means you lose control of it.  

Q: When can we safely say that the worst may be over?  

A: The number of cases has continued to increase at around about 16% to 20% each day. Until we get to the point where those numbers are declining, we couldn’t say we turned the corner.   (Adds to the second answer the notion that behavior in public spaces is unlikely to be curbed. A previous version of this story corrected the spelling of the doctor’s name.)  

For the original article follow this link

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Coronavirus – what we know about it and how we can protect ourselves from getting ill?

According to the World Health Organisation Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.
According to the World Health Organisation Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.
According to the World Health Organisation Coronaviruses (CoV) are a large family of viruses that cause illness ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS-CoV). A novel coronavirus (nCoV) is a new strain that has not been previously identified in humans.
Coronaviruses are zoonotic types of viruses, meaning they are transmitted between animals and people. Snakes – the Chinese krait and the Chinese cobra – might be the original source of the newly discovered coronavirus that has triggered an outbreak of a deadly infectious respiratory illness in China this year.
How does the infection pass from one to another?
The virus is transmitted both by airborne droplets and by contact: for example, through the touch of dirty hands to the eyes.
Know the Symptoms
The first signs of infection are dry cough, difficulty breathing, fever, and weakness. In some cases, the disease goes away without pneumonia but is accompanied by a dry cough and a low temperature. In more severe cases, the infection can evolve into pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death. The incubation period of coronavirus lasts from 2 to 12 days.
Prevention
Be aware of washing hands and talking less with other people at close range.
Assure to cover your mouth and nose when coughing and sneezing. Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing. It is emphasized that mild symptoms do not mean that a person cannot infect others.
Is it really helpful to wear a respiratory protection mask?
It is recommended to wear masks and assure that you are not touching your nose under it, especially when you shacked hands with somebody before. It is important to change your mask every new day or when you feel it is not clean enough.

The situation is aggravated by the fact that Asia is now celebrating the New Year, which means that many Chinese go to visit relatives.

The virus has spread to a number of Asian countries and has spread to France, USA, Canada and more. See the map below:
#coronavirusoutbreak #coronarovirus #nCoV #outbreak #virus #handswashing #handshygiene
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Jersusalem Shawarma facing backlash after suspected norovirus outbreak at Calgary restaurants

A family-owned chain of Calgary shawarma restaurants is facing backlash after Alberta Health Services revealed a suspected norovirus outbreak linked to their restaurants.
According to AHS, nearly 130 people have registered complaints that they fell ill after eating food from Jerusalem Shawarma.
AHS said Thursday it received its first complaint about Jerusalem Shawarma on Dec. 6.
More complaints were later made by 17 different groups who said they ate food from multiple Jerusalem Shawarma locations from Dec. 4 to 12.
“Please don’t judge us,” Jerusalem Shawarma co-owner Izzo AbuFarha said. “It was just an isolated [incident] in one of our locations, it didn’t happen all over the place.”
AbuFarha and his five brothers own the 10-restaurant chain, which opened in 2013.
He said they’ve has complied with AHS health inspectors, who recommended the restaurant wash common surfaces and the washrooms every 30 minutes.
AHS said they are currently investigating each complaint to verify the claims, with many coming from groups that fell ill after eating catered lunches.
All of the chain’s locations were inspected by AHS, but none of the restaurants were ordered to close.
“Anything that was of concern, like the ready-to-eat food products, have all been discarded — those things have been started from scratch again. There’s been full disinfections at each of the locations, so we’ve ensured that public safety is number one,” AHS Calgary Zone safe food program manager Sarah Nunn said.
“If there was any serious concerns, then absolutely those locations would’ve been closed.”
Following the news of the AHS investigation, AbuFarha said the restaurant has seen a steep decline in business, including multiple cancellations of catering orders.
He said the restaurant has also received racist comments. “This is something we’ve been getting on a daily basis, lots of bad comments, lots of messages, lots of threatening, lots of phone calls to our staff, to our employees,” AbuFarha said.
Faizan Butt, the lawyer representing Jerusalem Shawarma, said the investigation has been blown out of proportion.
According to AHS, the virus is common around this time of year and is extremely contagious. Symptoms of norovirus include severe stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea, and can last anywhere from 24 to 60 hours, AHS said.
The best way to prevent infection is to wash your hands often and wash fruits and vegetables before eating them.
“The biggest thing is it’s out there in the community, and it’s about prevention,” Nunn said. “It’s about making sure that we don’t pass this on to anybody else.”
Nunn said AHS takes every complaint seriously and recommends anybody with concerns to contact AHS or 811 with health questions.​
AbuFarha said his employees are taking AHS’ advice seriously, all in an effort to go on with business as usual.
“We’re seeking the support of our community, we’re seeking the support of Calgarians in making this business get back to normal,” he said.
With files from Global News’ Kaylen Small
Original article: LINK
#Outbreak #Norovirus #Food #AHS #JerusalemShawarma #Canada #Calgary
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Classroom Experiment Shows the Importance of Hand-Washing — Just in Time for Flu Season

A science teacher is imploring students and parents to wash their hands after posting the results of her classroom’s stomach-churning experiment.
Flu season is in full swing. The CDC is reporting that 30 states—especially southern states like Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi, Tennessee, Alabama, Georgia, and South Carolina—are already seeing flu activity. A preliminary estimates report states that there have already been 1.7 million to 2.5 million flu illnesses nationwide between October and November. Thankfully, there are measures everyone can take to keep the virus at bay. And a science teacher from Idaho is spreading awareness with a jaw-dropping post that has gone viral.
Jaralee Annice Metcalf shared photos of a science project she did with her class, writing alongside a series of photos, “We took fresh bread and touched it. We did one slice untouched. One with unwashed hands. One with hand sanitizer. One with washed hands with warm water and soap. Then, we decided to rub a piece on all our classroom Chromebooks.” The result: “So DISGUSTING!!!”
Photos by : COURTESY OF JARALEE ANNICE METCALF
Metcalf pointed out that yes, the school typically sanitizes the Chromebooks but didn’t for this experiment, the results took three to four weeks due to the bread’s preservatives which extend shelf life, and the bread was placed in tightly-sealed freezer Ziploc bags.
“If the bread had been exposed to air and moisture, the experiment may have gone faster,” Metcalf tells Parents.com. “The breads that were very clearly exposed to different germs grew mold quicker. And ones touches by clean hands plus the soap and water ones were not exposed to the germs that cause the mold growth to quicken.”
In her Facebook post, Metcalf identified herself “as somebody who is sick and tired of being sick and tired of being sick and tired and urged followers to wash their hands” and urged her followers to wash their hands, remind their kids to wash their hands, and to remember that hand sanitizer is not an alternative to washing your hands.
She pointed those interested in doing the experiment themselves to instructions provided on C.S. Mott Children’s Hospital’s website.
Since Metcalf shared the images, her post has earned over 59K shares and over 8K comments.
Ultimately, the science teacher hopes that parents not only better understand the importance of hand-washing but that they take the results into consideration when their child comes down with a bug. “Germs spread rapidly,” Metcalf tells Parents.com. “And it doesn’t matter how often they’re told or how well they’re taught to wash their hands, children won’t always do it properly or enough.” That said, when hand-washing fails, a sick day might be called for, which could preempt illnesses like the flu from spreading even further.
Original publication: link
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A norovirus outbreak shut down an entire Colorado school district right before Thanksgiving

A Colorado school district has closed more than 40 schools after a highly contagious virus outbreak.
It’s the first time the Mesa County Valley School District 51 has had to close all schools due to illness, the district said Wednesday.
“We are taking this highly unusual action because this virus is extremely contagious and spreading quickly across our schools,”
Nursing Coordinator Tanya Marvin said in the statement.
More than a dozen schools in the state’s 14th largest district reported increased absences “due to illness and several incidences of vomiting in public areas of the schools,” according to the Mesa County Public Health Department.
A second, related virus has also been affecting students in recent weeks, the district said.
“The combination of the two has created an unprecedented spread of illness.”
“Onset of symptoms for both types of viruses, including vomiting, is incredibly fast. The second version also causes fever in several cases,” the district statement said.
The health department says it is working to identify the illness, which is “acting a lot like norovirus” and lasts between 12-24 hours.
Norovirus, sometimes called the “stomach bug,” is easily spread through direct contact, consuming contaminated food or water, or touching contaminated surfaces and then putting your hands in your mouth, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The very young, older people, and those with other illnesses are most vulnerable to severe dehydration.
The closure includes all after-school activities, the district said, and schools will remained closed until after Thanksgiving break.
Mesa County Valley School District 51 is the largest school district between Salt Lake City, Utah, and Denver, Colorado, the district website says. It serves more than 22,000 students in 46 schools and programs, employing nearly 3,000 employees.
Tips on how to avoid the illness include thoroughly washing hands and staying away from people who are sick.
“When you have norovirus, the very dramatic symptom people have is often violent vomiting that hits you pretty suddenly,” said Amesh Adalja, MD, a spokesperson for the Infectious Diseases Society of America and a senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security in Baltimore, Maryland.
“You have nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, and it usually lasts 24 to 48 hours,” he told Healthline. “It can be a pretty grueling 24 to 48 hours.”
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)Trusted Source reports the virus sickens millions of people each year. The very young, older people, and those with other illnesses are most vulnerable to severe dehydration.
Each year, as many as 71,000 people are hospitalized. Between 500 and 800 die.
Picture: Getty
“What’s very striking about norovirus is that it’s very highly infectious. And if you’re exposed to it, there’s a very high likelihood you could be infected by it, even if you’re in good health,” Adalja said.
Easy to get, hard to shakeExperts say that when someone is sick with norovirus, they have large amounts of the virus in them, although it only takes a little to make you sick.
“We know that people who have the virus shed it in very large numbers in their fecal material. We’re talking millions to billions of virus particles in a gram,” said Lee-Ann Jaykus, PhD, a professor in the department of food, bioprocessing, and nutrition sciences at North Carolina State University.
“It probably doesn’t take more than 100 particles to make you sick,” she told Healthline.
Jaykus says scientists know the virus is passed from person to person. That happens when an infected person doesn’t wash their hands after using the bathroom.
The surfaces they touch can become contaminated. If the infected person is a food handler, they can pass the virus onto your food.
They also know that when an infected person vomits, that surface will be contaminated.
But more recently, researchers learned that norovirus may also be transmitted in the air from the repeated vomiting.
“A lot of times this is what we call projectile vomiting, very forceful and severe, literally across the room,” Jaykus explained. “Some of that vomitus gets aerosolized, and it has norovirus in it.”
To study how this happens, Jaykus and a team of researchers actually built a vomiting machine to test how norovirus spreads. The machine simulated human vomiting.
The team used a surrogate virus, which wouldn’t make anybody sick. Then they measured the airborne virus particles.
The scientists publishedTrusted Source the findings of their study in the PLOS One journal in 2015.
“You can detect it. The numbers are not as high as in fecal material, but it’s there,” Jaykus added. “What happens is some of the virus gets aerosolized, people breathe it in. It hits the mucous membranes, goes into the stomach, and the infection process starts.”
And once it starts spreading through a community, the virus is hard to get rid of.
“This particular virus is extraordinarily resistant to the sanitizers and disinfectants that we commonly use at regulated concentrations and contact times,” Jaykus said.
“It’s also incredibly persistent. If I were to put norovirus on a surface in front of me right now, it would probably remain capable of causing infection for a month, maybe more,” she added.
What you can doJaykus notes there’s no norovirus vaccine yet, although some are being developed.
“The real way to protect yourself is to wash your hands a lot. If you see somebody vomiting, go the other way. And if you’re on a cruise ship, tell somebody,” she said.
The CDC Trusted Source has put together some tips to help you keep norovirus from spreading:
1) Practice good handwashing for at least 20 seconds. Alcohol-based hand sanitizer alone won’t do.
2) Wash your fruits and vegetables. Cook seafood thoroughly.If you’re sick, don’t cook or care for others for at least 2 to 3 days after you recover.
3) Clean contaminated surfaces first, then disinfect them. Use a chlorine bleach solution with a concentration of 1,000 to 5,000 ppm (5 to 25 tablespoons of household bleach [5.25 percent] per gallon of water) or other disinfectant registered as effective against norovirus by the Environmental Protection Agency.
4) Wash your laundry thoroughly.
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