Thursday 23 September 2021

The Worst Thing You Can Wear to the Supermarket Right Now

Not the time to be the 'The Dude', leave your sunglasses in the car or at home when going shopping in these times of the coronavirus

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Rico’s COVID-19 Digest – By now, most of us have gotten used to the idea of popping on a face mask if we’re going indoors to a public place where we can expect to encounter a lot of people—such as a supermakert.

Not the time to be the ‘The Dude’

But, there’s one thing you probably don’t want to have on you when you head into the super, and it’s probably not something you’d expect: sunglasses.

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Guilty. Now I leave them in the car.

That’s right, wearing shades indoors is not just a fashion faux pas. It also could create opportunities for picking up unwanted germs, bacteria, and contagions that can put yourself at greater risk of contracting COVID-19.

You increase your risk to COVID exposure when you wear your shades shopping. You wear your sunglasses on your head or clip them on your shirt and frequently touch or adjust them while shopping. It’s an unnecessary risk for a 15-30-minute shopping venture.

You see, and we all do it, whether you’re wearing your sunglasses on your face, on the back of your head, or clipped to your shirt, you’re likely to touch them as you make your way through the aisles.

Any frequently-touched item from the super (like a shopping cart or basket) may have been touched by any number of shoppers and store employees. By touching that, then your glasses, you may be unconsciously spreading the virus.

Sunglasses are generally a plastic surface where coronavirus can ‘live’ from a few hours to several days, dependent upon the material. Shades have bends and folds which are difficult to clean and are a ‘hiding place’ for COVID-19.

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What is one the ways COVID-19 spreads? Yes, getting in your eyes? So wouldn’t wearing glasses be a kind of defense?

According to research from Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, yes, the proteins from your eyes and even tears can transmit the coronavirus. But no, glasses do not serve as an effective defense, according to a different study published in the medical journal, Contact Lens&Anterior Eye.

It found that a simple glasses frame “does not seal the air around the eyes, and, therefore, cannot provide adequate protection,” said the lead author Lyndon Jones, director of the Centre for Ocular Research&Education at the University of Waterloo in Canada.

Worse, having something on your face that leads you to touch it will increase the likelihood you will directly touch your face—one of the last things you want to do when it comes to avoiding the spread of the virus.

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Touching products at the store and then fidgeting with your sunglasses several times increases the chances of it becoming a breeding ground for bacteria and viruses.

So, my suggestion, is to keep your sunglasses in the car, your purse, bag or in their case and don’t touch them until you’ve left the store and disinfected your hands.

And, when shopping, try to minimize the number of personal items you take into the store, ie your cell phone. If you do take you cell phone, who can handle the additional stress of not having their cell phone on them, don’t take it out of your pocket, purse, whatever. Even to answer a call or text.

If you remove and then put on your sunglasses as you enter and leave the store, you run the risk of the COVID-19 virus infecting the mucous membranes, including the nose and eyes.

Every time you touch possibly contaminated surfaces you need to wash your hands before touching any of your personal items. And that includes sunglasses.


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"Rico" is the crazy mind behind the Q media websites, a series of online magazines where everything is Q! In these times of new normal, stay at home. Stay safe. Stay healthy.

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