With the number of coronavirus cases now on the rise in most states, those predictions by health experts a few months ago of a coming winter wave seem to be coming true.
With not only the COVID-19 virus, but combined with the annual flu virus, they warned of what was called a twindemic this winter.
Not a surprise of course. The winter means colder, or at least cooler weather, and it means less sunshine and it means more time spent indoors.
But two new studies suggest that there may be ways to reduce the risk of getting COVID or the flu.
The first new study found a lot of it has to do with the sun, making dark winter nights primetime for epidemics. The study found that the frequency and growth of epidemics are connected to the amount of sunlight that hits the earth.
The researchers say it’s commonly accepted that ultraviolet light can deactivate many varieties of viruses and bacteria. So maybe getting outdoors to soak up some sun, even when it’s chilly may be a good idea.
Another new study shows that cough droplets containing the COVID virus can travel beyond six feet, maybe as far as 20 feet and can even still infect people once they have evaporated.
So while you get outdoors to get more sun and more social distance, the research suggests that wearing a face mask as much as you can any time where there are other people around does appear to be a good idea.
We all know we can do things to reduce the size of the winter wave. We just have to do them.
(Photo Getty Images)