Gloves are an effective way of preventing the spread of COVID-19
The use of gloves, along with other precautionary measures like the frequent washing of hands, have proven to be effective against the transmission of the disease.
Since the COVID-19 outbreak, we have been taking all the steps necessary to decrease the risk of contracting the virus, like wearing latex gloves to protect our hands or covering our faces with a mask. The question of urgency arises to take steps that prove to be most effective. This ongoing debate surrounding the extent to which the latex gloves are helpful shows the difference of opinion among masses. However, they should take factual evidence into account by physicians and researchers in favor of the matter. While experts call it necessary to wear gloves for protection in public, laypeople believe that it promotes a false sense of safety.
Many people are still unsure whether it’s a necessity or a source of discomfort to wear hand protection in public because of uncertainty regarding the matter.
The importance of using gloves
Healthcare workers in the medical industry most commonly use nitrile gloves and other Personal Protective Equipment because of their durability and high puncture resistance. Since the frontline workers are exposed to infections and are in direct contact with their patients, gloves help in protecting them from various infections and viruses (such as COVID-19). How gloves are supposed to be worn and disposed of after being used is stated clearly in the protocols.
Understanding that the grocery store involves a very different scenario, health care officials believe in zero medical benefits associated with wearing gloves over there. As wearing gloves diverts your attention from keeping your hands clean, it is considered counterproductive in this scenario.
Why should one wear these gloves to protect themselves?
It is dependent on how it makes you feel when you wear these gloves outside. This means that wearing them also requires following certain guidelines, which include not touching your face when you are outside. However, it is difficult to refrain from touching your face without gloves, which increases the chances of getting affected. One needs to keep social distancing instructions into consideration while you are outside.
The majority of us tend to forget refraining from touching various things, which results in the transmission of the germs onto our phone, wallet, and steering wheel of our car. Therefore, it’s advised that you bring soap/hand sanitizer along with yourself and wear gloves so that you can stop the germs from being spread and dispose of the gloves before touching personalized items. Despite wearing gloves, you are required to wash your hands regularly because the hands tend to get contaminated, which is why you should ideally wash them.
Notice that no matter which protective measure you follow, it all comes down to the overall situation and the circumstances that you’re in. Keep reading to find out how and why!
- COVID-19 gets transmitted as a result of a virus that spreads from one person to another through droplets when someone infected either sneezes or coughs. This, too, if they do not have a distance of at least six feet between them. Other than that, one can also catch the virus if they come in contact with contaminated surfaces and then touch their eyes, mouth, or nose.
- So far, the safest way to avoid getting coronavirus is to keep washing the hands regularly for about 20 seconds, especially if you have been outside. Wearing gloves may reduce the chance of you contracting the virus because you will avoid touching your face if you’re wearing gloves. But, it is still advised to keep a sanitizer with yourself.
- Let’s suppose that you took your dog for a walk in the park while keeping a fair distance of about six feet from people. In this case, is it necessary for you to keep wearing gloves? Well, yes, it is. This is because if you’re wearing gloves, it’s highly unlikely that you will touch your face with the gloves on. You can never know when your hands come in contact with an infected surface. Lastly, in case you are following basic social distancing instructions, you do not have anything to worry about.
How can you protect yourself from the virus?
In order to protect yourself from the virus, the WHO instructs to wear gloves and keep washing hands from an alcohol-based soap regularly. If one does so, their chances of getting diagnosed with the disease massively reduce because of them prioritizing good hand hygiene. There are a few instructions you need to follow if you are using disposable gloves. These instructions are given as under:
- When removing the gloves, do not let them touch your skin. You can remove them by peeling them away.
- After removing one glove, apply the same procedure for removing the second one while making sure it’s peeled off inside out.
- Now that you have removed both of them, safely dispose of them somewhere.
Wearing gloves can be a huge contributor to you not contracting the virus if you are careful about it. Note that gloves and masks are used by a lot of people to prevent the virus from getting transmitted, which is why it is an important protective gear in preventing transmission. You should follow all the instructions in addition to crucial measures like the use of disposable gloves to protect you from the virus.
How frequently should one change their gloves?
One needs to keep changing their gloves frequently to prevent their personal items from getting contaminated. After you remove them, make sure that you throw them in a trash can. Keeping a bag where you can dispose of gloves can be quite helpful if there is no trash can nearby. Let’s suppose that there is only one pair of gloves that’s available at the moment; you can reuse it if it is sanitized. This solution of soap and water makes 90% of the contaminators ineffective.
Imagine while you are shopping, you accidentally touch your eyes or nose. While wearing gloves, this might not happen as often as it would without them. But it would result in canceling out any protection these gloves have offered previously, which is why it is important to wash your hands frequently and avoid touching any surfaces. Healthcare experts agree on and washing being essential for protection against COVID-19, whether you wear these gloves or not. It is advised by the professionals that you use soap to deal with germs and viruses effectively.
If you are already wearing gloves in public spaces such as departmental stores and it helps you in staying calm, you should keep wearing them. Follow the guide above and make sure you sanitize your gloves before you reuse them, or just take a new pair out. Though even if you are wearing gloves, you have to be conscientious about anything you touch!
Manoj Parmar has been working in the manufacturing and importing of medical and healthcare supplies for over 15 years. He currently works at Glove Club Ltd which was established in 1994 and a leading manufacturer and supplier of medical consumables with products including disposable gloves, masks, dental and paper products. Bringing his wealth of experience he has recently started Supreme Wellbeing, supplying a range of vitamins and supplements. You can find him on Linkedin or Twitter @p4rma