Why Humidity Levels Matter During Flu Season
As we noted in our former post, How Flu Spreads: A Look At The Potency of “Super Spreaders”, flu is spread most by “super spreaders.” Those are the fevered flu sufferers that unfortunately exponentially infect those they come into contact with during their day.
Fever is not the only factor contributing to the spread of influenza, however, in fact the level of dryness in the indoor air significantly increased or decreases the propensity for highly contagious influenza subtypes to spread. In fact, viruses are 10 times more viable and likely to spread on dryer days.
On some dryer days there is an even higher chance for spreading infections and there is a higher immune susceptibility. A sick and fevered person can super spread their infection to other people much easier during these dryer days. For example during the 2003 SARS epidemic a 22 year old was hospitalized with SARS after a trip to Hong Kong.*
It was found that the patient was directly linked to probable SARS infections in 21 people during her hospital stay.* Also to note during this period the immune risk and susceptibility in Hong Kong was in a moderate to high risk infection spread and susceptibility state.**
The key to lessen the blow from a super spreader is early detection. Identifying a fever and the onset of illness is the first step to prevent the spread of your infection to other people. If you are sick and fevered staying home from work will lower the spread risk. Super spreaders are not to blame for seasonal outbreaks such as influenza but they do play the lead role in the severity of the outbreak.
Get the welloWatch App and See When Infection Can Spread
Download the FREE welloWatch app to see which days are the most prone to infection spread. Protect yourself by cleaning your hands and avoiding direct hand-to-hand contact as much as possible.
**Data pulled from welloWatch. Contact us to find out more about immune and susceptibility risk. http://www.welloinc.com/contact/