Like all viruses, the Sars virus is made up of a protein called the Sars virus protein. Unlike many viruses, however, Sars isn’t just a single protein. It is a collection of over 200 different proteins that work together in an attempt to invade and capture living cells. When they do, they spread from cell to cell, multiplying wildly in a process known as replicating virus infection. There are various ways that this virus is spread from person to person.
One of the ways that the virus can spread is through contact with infected hands or body parts. However, while there is plenty of scientific research on how excellent hand hygiene protects the spread of other respiratory irritants, there is relatively little research on whether or not it performs the same function against the Sars-CoV-2 virus. That enveloped virus is made up of the same proteins found in all viruses, and so the logic goes that when an infection is successful against another ‘infected virus’, then that particular protected substance is equally effective against its counterpart. Thus, one of the most common methods of personal protection against the Sars virus is the use of N95 respirators. N95 stands for “nuance breather” – a type of mask that allows people to breathe easier when exposed to airborne contaminants.
While it is true that N95s offer excellent protection against the most potent of airborne irritants, they are unable to protect against other particles that can be passed along while hand hygiene is practiced. In fact, some types of N95s actually encourage contact with these contaminants in order to boost their effectiveness. Thus, if you want the highest protection, then you will need to ensure that your hands are as clean as possible. For people who find this task daunting, there are two options: One is to make your own homeopathic hand wash using ingredients that you likely already have; and two is to invest in effective homeopathic facial washes, scrubs and masks that will deliver comprehensive protection.
The truth is that no matter what kind of face mask you choose to wear, if you do not wash them thoroughly afterwards, then any protection offered will be null and void. Although some manufacturers state that disinfection should occur after wearing the mask, this is not necessarily true. While some brands will specifically state that you need to wash them after each use, others will only apply the necessary disinfectant agents straight onto the surface of the mask before using them. This means that you can potentially become infected just by wearing the mask on your face! However, there are products out there that will not only remove any residual disinfectant but will also help to remove any dirt or oil that may remain underneath the surface of the mask.
To understand why you should only use disinfectant-based products when using a face mask to prevent the transmission of this highly contagious virus, it is essential to first acquaint ourselves with how coronaviruses come into contact with our bodies. They are most often spread via direct contact with an open sore or wound, particularly the mouth and eyes. However, they can also be transmitted via direct contact with any mucous membranes, particularly those in the nose or around the nose. The most commonly diagnosed routes of transmission are through the hands and the nose. However, these routes of infection are not always easy to identify and in fact, it has been known for patients to contract the virus from someone else who has previously been diagnosed with this disease. Therefore, although masks and gloves can help to prevent the spread of this virus, the best way to protect yourself is to wash your hands and keep your nose clear at all times.
So, how is hand washing and handwashing processes different when it comes to preventing the transmission of this virus? One way is by ensuring that your hands are clean at all times. By performing routine tasks such as reading a book, eating or writing on a table and touching things like appliances or telephones you spread the bacteria from your hands. Therefore, it is important to practice hand washing and hand wiping. While there may be many medical professionals who will suggest that the use of hand wipes or other sanitizing agents is sufficient, research has shown that this practice does not remove all bacteria and germs from your hands, especially when you are doing repetitive tasks or repeatedly touching the same surface. By utilizing an appropriate instrument to wipe your hands, you can ensure that you effectively remove all bacteria, germs and fungi from your hands.
Another way to promote hand washing and hand wiping is by wearing protective gloves or masks when performing these tasks. According to Professor David MacIntyre of University College London, “It’s well known that overuse of strong hand detergents can cause the contamination of the mucous membrane. Therefore, it’s a good idea to wear gloves or masks, which can prevent this.” In fact, he says that there are now strong, latex gloves available which do not allow water to enter the skin and they allow for greater protection against airborne pathogens such as viruses and bacteria. This, he adds, is particularly important for handling food preparation areas where there are often numerous types of food and grease which could contaminate the surfaces in both food preparation and eating.
Although there have been numerous studies done on the benefits of face covering with a variety of materials, one thing that has not been studied extensively is whether or not face covers provide a higher level of protection than plain soap and water. Based on what we know about how the virus spreads and on what we know about how contaminants can enter the body through the use of unsterilized soap, Professor MacIntyre states, “The answer is yes.” He goes on to say, “Washing your hands often, either with soap and water or a face covering, protects your hands from contamination. It may be necessary to go further, though, and consider the use of an NDA (nasal drip protector).