Tips for preventing spread of C-19 through tears: Doctor

The risk of transmission (of the virus) through other routes such as fecal-oral and conjunctival secretions cannot be ignored


Last Updated on December 17, 2021 by The Health Master

Tips for preventing the spread of C-19 through tears: Doctor

While C-19 virus commonly spreads through mucus or droplets expelled by coughing or sneezing, a recent study by Government Medical College, Amritsar found that tears of C-19 patients, whether they have an eye condition or not, have the potential to transmit the infection to the other person.

The study focused on evaluating the presence of the deadly virus in tears of positive patients with and without ‘ocular manifestation’ or eye condition caused by C-19.

A similar study published in the latest edition of Indian Journal Ophthalmology says that C-19 can be present in tears with or without ocular involvement.

This puts the caregiver of a C-19 patient and medical staff at increased risk of contracting the virus as coming into direct contact of tears or touching surface that might be infected by tears can pass on the virus.

An article published in The Lancet highlights the role of wearing spectacles for more than 8 hours per day to protect against the infection.

Experts also suggest using eye-protective face shields to prevent community transmission in this regard.

Another study published in National Library of Medicine and quoted by The Lancet said that before using face shields, around 19% of health-care workers became infected from the virus despite wearing three-layered surgical masks, gloves, shoe covers and using alcohol rub. After they started using face shields, none of them was infected.

People who are infected with the virus and those who are caring for them must keep this new finding in mind and follow these tips by Dr Sadeedharan.

Here are the Tips for preventing spread of Covid-19 through tears:

1. Avoid rubbing your eyes when infected with C-19

2. Cover your mouth and nose while sneezing or use the inside of your elbow

3. Throw used tissues in the trash

4. Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

5. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands if you are around infected people.

6. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

7. Wear a mask in public settings and when around people not living in their household.

8. Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily.

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