5 Things You Shouldn't Do for a Very Long Time After Coronavirus
Just because reopening is underway, doesn't mean you can return to life as usual.
We're all eager for life to get back to normal, but even as stores begin to open and restrictions start to wane, certain events are riskier than others and should continue to be avoided. That means opting for intimate dinners for two rather than large parties for the next few months. And by no means should you be hosting or attending what news sources are calling "super-spreader" events, as they pose a more significant threat to public health than your normal get together due to the volume of people involved. In an effort to learn from past mistakes, these are the things you should continue to avoid after reopening.
Attend a funeral.
While it's extremely heartbreaking to be robbed of the chance to pay your respects to lost loved ones in the company of friends and family, traditional funeral services that draw large groups of people will not be safe for a while.
A case study published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Chicago Department of Health tracked a chain reaction beginning with a patient in Chicago who attended a funeral while having the coronavirus, resulting in the infection of 16 people. And for other tips for staying safe after reopening, check out 14 Places You Should Still Avoid When Lockdown Ends.
Go to a pot-luck dinner.
The same patient responsible for the aforementioned spread in Chicago also contaminated two hosts of a pot-luck dinner he attended the night before the funeral. The act of sharing food and talking in close quarters is the ideal opportunity for the coronavirus to spread via viral droplets. So, until the pandemic has passed, opt for more intimate gatherings where no one is swapping plates of food.
Attend a birthday party.
While Zoom celebrations may be less than ideal, they beat out the potentially life-threatening alternative. The same CDC study that followed the patient in Chicago rounds out with him attending a birthday with nine people, seven of which ended up contracting coronavirus. This unfortunate occurrence goes to show that even smaller gatherings can be dangerous during the pandemic.
Additionally, a birthday party held in a Connecticut suburb—with no known cases of coronavirus at the time—ended up being the root cause of almost 20 cases of COVID-19. According to the The New York Times, half of those in attendance contracted the virus. With numbers as staggering as these, your birthday will have to be held via video call until further notice. And for the changes your children can expect, check out 7 Things Your Kids Will Never Get to Do Again After the Coronavirus.
Visit a religious house of worship.
Those who frequent religious houses of worship are aching to get back to the places that play such an important role in their lives, but we've seen these kinds of gatherings backfire before. In February, a 61-year-old woman attended church in Daegu, South Korea. Following the service, she tested positive for the coronavirus, as did at least 43 other members of the church. The incident sparked a snowball effect that caused the country's cases of COVID-19 to jump from 29 to 2,900 in just two weeks.
Additionally, a 50-year-old man, thought to be New York City's second confirmed coronavirus case, infected at least 28 people, many of whom were fellow patrons of the synagogue he attended. Though the synagogue was promptly closed, as were several surrounding schools, in an effort to stop the spread early, the effects were already rippling. Religious gatherings are communal and close-knit in nature, so they are best attended virtually for the time being.
Participate in rehearsals
Rehearsals involving groups of people gathering to practice anything from dancing and singing to improv comedy will have to remain on pause for a while longer. According to a report published by the CDC, after a choir rehearsal in Washington, 53 of the 61 participants were found to be infected with COVID-19.
Singing in close proximity presents an especially high threat because it can send droplets beyond the six feet of separation. "Droplets can be pushed farther out, sometimes even beyond six feet, if you give the exhalation more energy, with a cough or a sneeze or even singing," William Schaffner, a professor of infectious diseases at Vanderbilt University, told Business Insider. And to learn how to avoid spreading bacteria in your house, check out 11 Ways You're Spreading Germs All Over Your Home Without Realizing It.