Friday, August 09, 2013
I’ve just completed my annual flu review in preparation for the upcoming season. As I consider the relative merits of preventive strategies, I’m reminded of all the various ways in which people, rather less than more, cover their mouths while coughing or sneezing. One patient coughed weakly but wetly in the general direction of his hand located more than a foot away from his mouth. My sweet 8 year old granddaughter coughed into her hand with fingers spread wide, droplets spraying through the gaps. Another patient simply gave up hygiene altogether as she demoed her cough for me by doing just that, coughing directly into the space in front of her in which I happened to be standing (yes, I did get sick from that one).
So here we go again, sharing air with our colleagues while trying to neither inhale their airborne sputum nor send our own into space. For an amusing tutorial on sneeze/cough technique, check out "Why Don't We Do It In Our Sleeves?"