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Spread Of Diseases Through Touch

What are some of the common ways in which disease-causing germs spread?

There are different ways by which germs can spread. They can be carried by water or air. Examples include typhoid, dysentery, hay-fever, influenza and many others. Many disease-causing germs are carried through the food that we eat and can cause stomach flu, diarrhea and other diseases of our digestive system. Pathogenic microscopic organisms can also get transferred by direct contact through body fluids and cause diseases such as AIDS. Another very common way in which these germs can spread is through touch.


How can germs get transferred through touch?

Touch is a very effective way of transferring germs. Touch can include touching contaminated and soiled surfaces. An infected person can transfer germs by touching surfaces with a dirty hand and leaving these germs behind for the next healthy person who touches the same surface. Without even realizing it, a healthy person can pick up harmful germs simply by touching a surface. The healthy person can then touch their nose or mouth before washing their hands, and that can introduce the disease-causing germs in their body. This method of transfer is especially challenging because we are always touching different surfaces.

Examples of surfaces that are commonly touched include high-frequency contact points in public places such as doors, elevator buttons, hospital bed rails, armrests, public transport vehicle rails and fixtures, kitchen sinks and faucets, countertops, bathroom fixtures, etc.


How to clean commonly touched surfaces?

Commonly touched surfaces need regular cleaning to keep them clean and germ-free. This can be done by

  1. Wiping surfaces at regular intervals with antimicrobial cleaners: Make a schedule and wipe commonly-touched surfaces with cleaning solutions. These can be alcohol-based or detergent-based cleaners.

  2. Deep cleaning with soap and water: Soap and water can be used to scrub surfaces clean. This deep cleans surfaces and removes dust and debris, including oil and spills.

  3. Cleaning with DIY cleaners: Household DIY cleaners, such as vinegar is a good cleaning solution for daily cleaning and maintenance of commonly touched surfaces.

All of these require a regular schedule of cleaning that is time-consuming and expensive. They also require continuous maintenance as the antimicrobial effect is transient and not long-lasting. Many professional-grade cleaners are also made of harmful chemicals and are not environmentally friendly or non-toxic.


What is an antimicrobial touch surface?

An alternative is to install an antimicrobial touch surface that takes the work out of cleaning. Outbreaker Solutions Antimicrobial CSC touch surfaces are designed to do just that. Made of compressed sodium chloride, these touch surfaces are long-lasting, affordable and environment friendly. Besides, they work in seconds and help to protect against almost all types of common disease-causing germs.


What types of germs do the touch surfaces kill?

Germs are broadly classified as microscopic organisms that cannot be seen by the naked eye. Many germs are the cause of diseases. Typically, bacteria, viruses and most fungi are common disease-causing germs.

  • Viruses cause diseases like the common cold, influenza, chickenpox, AIDS and SARS. COVID-19 is also caused by a virus.

  • Some major bacterial diseases include strep throat, cholera, stomach flu and food poisoning.

  • Fungi cause many skin infections like candidiasis.

Antimicrobial touch surfaces can be permanent or temporary. Antimicrobial CSC is a permanent solution to limit the spread of almost all of the above disease-causing germs.


How does an antimicrobial touch surface work?

To be effective, antimicrobial touch surfaces kill pathogens that come in contact with them. There are different mechanisms by which these surfaces act.

  • Copper acts by rupturing the cellular membrane of bacteria, which leads to leakage of nutrients and water, thereby weakening the cell. Copper enters the ruptured cell and continues to act as a slow-release poison, killing the bacteria from within. The process, though foolproof, is slow and kills germs over many hours.

  • Titanium dioxide-based nanoparticle coatings do not kill germs. They act as a photocatalyst that converts light energy into chemical energy. This chemical energy causes the coating to be “chipped off” over time. These “chips” slough off the bacterial contaminants and leave behind a “clean” surface. To be effective, they require continuous maintenance and reapplication.

  • Antimicrobial CSC acts mainly through a combination of dehydration, denaturation and recrystallization. Through a process called osmosis, bacterial cells lose water when it comes in contact with a saline environment. In the absence of water, the cellular machinery ceases to function, the proteins denature and disintegrate and the bacterial cell shrinks, shrivels up, and dies. Recrystallization is a very fast process where micro-crystals of sodium chloride physically tear apart germs. Antimicrobial CSC works in seconds and does not need expensive maintenance and reapplications.

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