Bringing Humidity Up Can Slow Corona Down

While everyone anxiously awaits the end of the coronavirus pandemic, scientists at Yale say that in addition to social distancing and handwashing, increased indoor humidity may be an ally in slowing the virus’ transmission.

Cold temperatures deplete the moisture – or humidity – in the air and make it dry. This is why you’ll have dry skin or static in the winter. Viruses like SARS-CoV2 — the virus that causes COVID-19 – thrive in dry air in three ways:

  • Dry air clears a path for airborne viral particles and allows them to live longer (this is why we experience more colds and flu in the winter months).
  • Dry air hinders the ability of cilia in our airways to expel viral particles.
  • Our immune systems are less able to fight pathogens in dry environments.

In a study published recently in the Annual Review of Virology, the Yale scientists found that increasing indoor humidity levels slowed the virus’ spread. The research shows that mice kept in 40-60% relative humidity were substantially less able to transmit viruses to non-infected mice, compared to mice kept in very low or very high relative humidity.

The researchers also said that mice kept in 50% relative humidity were also able to expel an inhaled virus and showed more “robust immune responses.”

The easiest and fastest way to increase your indoor humidity is with a humidifier. These can be purchased to cover a single room or an entire home. When shopping for a humidifier, make sure you check the coverage area stated on the carton to ensure the model is large enough for your area.

If you decide to get a humidifier and have questions, we are happy to help. Just shoot us an email to info@essickair.com. Whether you decide on one of our models or another brand, the important thing is adding humidity to your home or office to help slow the virus’ transmission.

And, of course, keep social distancing and washing those hands.

OLDER NEWER
4.15.2020
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