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How do gloves protect?

(26 Posts)
MamaCaz Mon 09-Mar-20 11:21:37

I really don't see how wearing gloves helps to protect against viruses like coronavirus. I've read all the comments by those who wear them for this reason, but still don't get it.

Surely, while you are wearing them, the gloves pick up and transfer any viruses you might touch in just the same way as your hands, meaning that the risk of transferring these to your face, purse, phone, bank card, keys etc. is exactly the same as if you had bare hands?

I am ready to change my opinion if people can give me good enough reasons, but so far I haven't come across any convincing arguments or proof.

EllanVannin Mon 09-Mar-20 11:35:30

On going out I've always worn gloves, mainly to keep my hands warm because I feel the cold terribly. They're cotton/thermal gloves so very washable and once out of the door are never removed for anything---no need.
Once home from shopping touching/handling all kinds of things including money, they go in soak, washed, rinsed and dried for the next " outing ". Gloves can be removed and left soaking in Dettol, hands can't.

Rubber gloves for household jobs and being as there's only myself and the cats to worry about indoors it's not a problem.
I feel for families at times like these, and even couples where one or both have life-threatening illnesses.
I wish this virus would go away from whence it came.

BlueBelle Mon 09-Mar-20 11:37:50

I m not wearing gloves specifically I always wear them out I get cold hands It’s my understand that the virus only lives for a VERY short time on material so maybe that s the reason

Franbern Mon 09-Mar-20 11:38:31

No need to soak hands in dettol (or anything else like that) good old fashioned soap and water is all that is required.

M0nica Mon 09-Mar-20 23:50:43

I am considering putting latex gloves on when I go into a shop or handle cash. This idea occurred to me because I found a box of latex gloves in a cupboard last week.

When shopping is finished, wipe purse, bank card, keys with wipe, remove gloves and dispose of gloves and wipe appropriately. OK not 100% fool proof, but pretty close.

Oopsadaisy3 Tue 10-Mar-20 05:43:19

Monica don’t forget to wipe down the car door handles and steering wheel, plus all shopping bags, especially if plastic.

M0nica Tue 10-Mar-20 06:45:52

Surely, all the above will only get contaminated if anyone other than me touches them - and they don't. My bags are woven synthetic fabric and can just go in the washing machine immediately after use. I only shop once a week.

MamaCaz Tue 10-Mar-20 07:09:09

But what extra protection are the gloves actually adding?
In what way does wearing then disposing of those gloves give more protection than giving your hands a thorough clean with wipes/gel at that same stage of shopping, at the same time as you wipe your purse, cards etc?

(I hope you don't think I'm being deliberately obtuse - I'm not, I promise.)

Franbern Tue 10-Mar-20 09:18:46

OMG - cannot believe how so many people are going so OTT - what are the real chances of anyone coming into contact with anyone who has this virus - for any length of time , and then contracting it?
Gloves???? useful to keep you hands warm, that is what they are for. What next, are we all going to wear balaclavas??? Of course, will not be permitted into shops with those on!!!!
Do think we need to get a sense of proportion -PANIC is a much more wide-spread, and more debilitating and dangerous disease affecting many more people than any current, or old virus.
Have been told, for years, about the dangers of touching the handle of a supermarket trolley - never taken any notice. Yes, it is normal for me to wash my hands when I get back from shopping prior to unpacking and putting it all away, then again afterwards.

Missfoodlove Tue 10-Mar-20 09:36:17

I don’t see it as panic, just common sense.
I consider myself to be fastidious but still managed to get a dose of campylobacter!
The cases in Italy show the chances of contracting this virus are high.
By protecting myself I am protecting other people, it’s the only attitude that will halt the virus.

Daisymae Tue 10-Mar-20 09:41:46

Fran, just look at Italy. We will be there in a couple of weeks without taking some action to halt the spread

M0nica Tue 10-Mar-20 11:17:59

Daisymae, we are unlikely to be like Italy. Their outbreak started with a bang not a whimper and, as was discussed on R4 today, their health service is organised differently, in a manner that has madeit difficult, for them to work out a co-ordnated policy. Our health services are organised differently, have had pandemic plans for decades and work well together.

Italy now has over 9000 cases, we have about 325. France, Germany and Spain, similar sized countries have well over 1,000. Our rate is comparable with The Netherlands and our cases per thousand one of the smallest in the developed world

without taking some action to halt the spread makes the writer sound like one of those ER supporters who honestly believe that we have done nothing in he UK about global warming untilthey came on the scene last year.

We have constant reminders and details on how to protect ourself and others. Hospitals are prepared and airports and ports are watchful and giving out leaflets with all the info. Anyone found with or suspected of having the virus are immediately put in quarantine. What else do you suggest the authorities do?

What more do you want them to do and since we already have one of the lowest rates of this disease per 1000, how much difference will it make?

Megs36 Tue 10-Mar-20 15:33:28

Interesting comments but my question is where does everyone get all these wipes,never ever used them, and now I think none in the shops......only soap and water here, difficult to take the sink out though!!!!!

phoenix Tue 10-Mar-20 15:59:04

If anyone at work cuts or grazes themselves, I do put on disposable latex gloves when looking at the wound, offers some protection for both parties I think.

But I think the "germ phobia" (general germ phobia, not corona virus phobia) is getting out of hand.

Where do you draw the line? Wipe down your letter box because the postman has touched it? Disinfect your door handle/doorbell umpteen times a day? Supermarket trolley handles?

As stated, I refer to ordinary, everyday germs, not anything to do with the current situation.

At this rate children will not be allowed to play at all, and toddler groups! Shock shockhorror, they might touch a toy that another child has touched!

And forget, as an adult going into a shop! Someone else might have touched that book/dress/tin of cat food/pack of butter!

Of course they have! How do you think they got onto the shelves!

curvygran950 Tue 10-Mar-20 16:23:17

Great response phoenix, my thoughts exactly . Thank you for some common sense among all the hysteria .

rosenoir Tue 10-Mar-20 16:40:28

What do the germ phobics do about salad vegetables?

curvygran950 Tue 10-Mar-20 16:45:22

Soak them in Milton, I read somewhere.

curvygran950 Tue 10-Mar-20 16:54:04

Oh dear, supplies of Milton will now fly off the shelves...

phoenix Tue 10-Mar-20 17:22:12

curvygran thank you for post, good to hear that I am not alone, but grin about the Milton!

Farmor15 Tue 10-Mar-20 17:55:37

Apart from their use to keep hands warm, I would agree with OP and others here that wearing gloves to prevent infection is probably useless. Main use by medical professionals to prevent transferring infection to a patient - eg in dressing wounds, surgery etc. In the food industry, gloves used by those handling food may prevent food poisoning, as some types can be carried on skin of food handler.

But for the ordinary person, out and about, I don't think gloves will be any more use than washing hands or using hand sanitiser. I never wipe trolley handles, airline seats or tray tables or anything else I come in contact with. As I've mentioned in other posts, I'm a retired microbiologist, and along with most others in this profession, I'm certainly not germo-phobic, but I suppose knowing what the risks actually are, helps.

Barmeyoldbat Tue 10-Mar-20 18:33:35

I have bought a box of disposable gloves, very comfortable to wear. When I have them on I don't seem to touch my face, so I wear them at the supermarket to push the trolley, get my shopping and go home. Once inside I take them off and soak them in hot soapy water to reuse if needed. Don't know if they are doing any good but I feel safer.

SueDonim Tue 10-Mar-20 18:41:52

When we lived abroad any fruit & veg that was consumed without being cooked had to be steeped in dilute Milton! Everything had that faint chlorine flavour. grin

As for the gloves, a health expert friend says the main benefit is that you’re less likely to touch your face especially the mucous membranes of the eyes/nose/mouth when you have gloves on. So it’s not that the gloves don’t carry germs, it’s that you’re less likely to transfer them.

Hetty58 Tue 10-Mar-20 18:42:42

I wear cotton gloves when out and throw them in the wash when I get back. Of course, I still wash my hands too - but I believe that they keep my hands cleaner.

I have taps I can operate with an arm, so don't have to touch them and reinfect myself. I can't see the logic in having a thorough hand wash - then touching a dirty tap!

Greeneyedgirl Tue 10-Mar-20 18:52:04

I agree that gloves will offer no protection, apart from psychological that is!

Even if you wear them for all your shopping how do you sterilise the things you have picked up and bought before you put them in the fridge and cupboards I wonder?

Hetty58 Tue 10-Mar-20 19:30:07

I can't agree with M0nica that 'hospitals are prepared'. How can they be? They are barely coping with the ordinary everyday workload. Spare capacity and breathing machines are in short supply.