Coronavirus pandemic has people on the edge of their seats. From maintaining personal hygiene to wearing face masks and following physical distancing rules, people have developed new habits fearing they might contract the viral infection, which has spread across the world. There are more than 24 lakh cases of COVID-19 and over 1.6 lakh deaths, and there's no cure or vaccine in sight, which is the main reason for people to be extra cautious.
We know that the novel coronavirus stays in the air for 30 minutes and much longer on various surfaces, including clothes. The reason face masks have become a common sight everywhere is to prevent the spread of the virus from an infected individual. But have you considered if your farts can spread coronavirus or not? Well, there's an answer to that and it's not a simple yes or no. But let's get to the bottom of the matter.
Can farts spread coronavirus?
Based on facts, research and health experts in the matter, the answer is yes. But there's no reason to jump in panic and start pushing people away for passing the gas.
Recent reports have revealed that coronavirus was found in the stool of more than 50 percent of the patients who tested positive. It is well established in several existing research that farts carry microparticles, which can spread bacteria.
According to Andy Tagg, an Australian emergency physician at Western Health, farts have the power to spray talc long distances and a particle of talcum powder is 5 times bigger than a 5-micron aerosol droplet. In a series of tweets, Dr. Tagg gave some references of how farts can spread bacteria, but with one's pants on - the chances are next to zero. That said, Tagg also noted that there is no great deal of research to come to a firm conclusion in the matter of farts spreading coronavirus.
Tagg, who is the co-founder of the medical education site Don't Forget the Bubbles, suggests not to completely disregard the possibility of coronavirus spreading through a fart. But as long as you have your pants on, you're not spreading the disease.
Besides Tagg, Dr. Norman Swan, in ABC's coronavirus podcast called Coronacast, took up the question and reiterated the fact about pants or another form of clothing acting as personal protective equipment just like a mask for the face.
"Luckily, we wear a mask, which covers our farts all the time. I think that what we should do in terms of social distancing and being safe is that ... you don't fart close to other people, and that you don't fart with your bottom bare," Swan said in the podcast.
So the bottom line is this - don't lose your pants.