Washing hands, keeping your distance, putting on a mouth mask, the advice to keep corona out of the door, we are gradually familiar with. But what is much less attention is the humidity level in the house. Throw that up, scientists advise in the AD.
The virus thrives better in dry air and the air is much drier in winter. Bas van de Wiel, professor of atmospheric physics at TU Delft: “The colder it is outside, the drier the air gets inside.”
Virus particles that you exhale have a so-called water shell, which evaporates faster with dry air. The droplets then become smaller, so that they float longer and therefore become even smaller. They are easier to transfer and penetrate deeper into the lungs.
Humidifying the air in the home can therefore offer some protection against the corona virus. This effect is already recognized internationally. “Humidity levels of 40 to 60 percent can help to limit the spread and survival of the coronavirus indoors,” said the European Center for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC), for example.
Only the Dutch RIVM, as before with the mouth masks, does not want to wear it. It continues to maintain that mainly large virus particles spread the virus and keeping a distance works best. While it is so easy to make the air more humid. “If we take this seriously, you might be able to print reproduction number R by 0.1 or 0.2.”
Graphs show that the Dutch air humidity and the incidence of infections go hand in hand. You also see that with flu waves. According to the two scientists, including Geert Keetels, meteorologist and flow expert at TU Delft, the usefulness of higher humidity has been fairly well demonstrated. Moreover, it falls into the category: simple to implement and every little bit helps.
You can measure whether the air in the house is too dry with a sensor costing a few euros. You will also notice it in, for example, a dry throat, dry skin or static hair. A humidifier is the easiest way to humidify the air in your home. Otherwise, plants also help, just like drying the laundry indoors, a bowl of water on the heater or set the thermostat a few degrees lower.
Bron (nen): AD