Paper Towel Soaked in Salt Water May Improve Masks' Ability to Block Viruses, Bacteria

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    • #322672
      Mr. Mickeys Mom
      Moderator
      • Total Posts: 3,621

      By Linda Caroll, Compiled from Reuter’s Health Information
      Source: Medscape

      (Reuters Health) – When paper towels are soaked in a saline solution and then allowed to dry, they can effectively filter out particles comparable in size to the SARS-CoV-19 virus, a new study suggests.

      The ability of kitchen paper towels, laboratory paper towels and surgical mask filters to block tiny particles was dramatically improved by salt soaking, researchers report in the American Journal of Infection Control.

      The researchers see the salt treatment both as a way of improving DIY cloth masks and also extending the life of surgical masks.

      “Ideally people should have an adequate supply of masks and be able to change them out in-between patients,” said the study’s lead author, Jonathan Carnino, a research assistant in the department of pulmonology at the Boston University School of Medicine. “But in this pandemic, an extra layer of protection makes it more acceptable to be reusing masks throughout a shift. It’s an added level of safety for those risking their lives on the front lines.”

      Hell, no... I'm not giving up...

    • #322679
      Bernie Boomer
      Participant
      • Total Posts: 192

      We’ve started using the bamboo ‘paper’ towels – they are unbelievably sturdy but very soft, almost like a tissue. Among other things, I use them as moist towelettes (sprayed with a bleach solution and held in a plastic baggie) for going out; once I’m home I remove them, wash them with soap and water, allow to dry, reuse. They don’t get a ton of use that way, as I’m not going out unless it can’t be helped, but so far the only thing I haven’t been able to wash out of the towel was some sort of sticky crud from my car door handle.

      I wonder if their structure would provide the same benefit as the paper towels they used in this study?

      • #322684
        Mr. Mickeys Mom
        Moderator
        • Total Posts: 3,621

        The simplest thing you can do with a paper towel itself is to carry a spray bottle (I use the small one that I used to use to spray and wipe my eyeglasses) and pump some Listerine on it to wipe down and instantly kill the virus. The alcohol content in Listerine is enough to do that. Why bleach?

        As far as what happens when salt water dries ON a material worthy of being washed gently again (like a mask) has more to do with the barrier salt itself does to dehydrated any virus going through it.

        Hell, no... I'm not giving up...

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