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Toolie92

Joined: 3/5/15 Posts: 11038
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There is a growing amount of research that initial viral load matters


The amount of virus impinging on your body matters a lot - by now probably almost every person in the US has been 'exposed' to individual virus particles, but 90% or so of us have not yet been exposed to enough at one time for them to make a foothold in our bodies.

The more virus particles hit your body at one time, the more likely they can reproduce faster than your body can kill them. And there is even evidence that it affects the severity of disease (a high initial viral load results in a more severe case and worse outcome).

And additional studies are showing that talking, while not as bad as coughing, is FAR worse then not talking. Talking and especially singing or yelling spews vast amounts of viral particles out.

If you are in a high viral environment (like working in an office next to someone who is infected all day), a mask will at best maybe take the edge off your inevitable infection. But if you are in a low viral environment (like passing someone in the hall talking who is infected), then having that infected person wearing a mask could make the difference between you being infected or not infected. Statistically over 1000s of interactions, reducing viral load per interaction will reduce infections.

There is no binary 'this much is safe, that much is not safe'. It is a long continuum and if the infected person is wearing the mask the continuum can shift quite a lot, turning lots of 'less safe' situations into 'more safe' situations and while this may end up negligible for individual situations, across an entire population with millions of interactions daily, it can add up to bending the curve.



[Post edited by Toolie92 at 07/31/2020 9:16PM]

(In response to this post by jpmHoo)

Posted: 07/31/2020 at 9:13PM



+4

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