Wearing gloves does not help protect against coronavirus – WHO

Wearing rubber gloves while out in public is not an effective way to prevent new coronavirus infections.

This is advice from the World Health Organisation (WHO), which said that regularly washing your bare hands offers more protection against COVID-19 than wearing rubber gloves.

Many South Africans purchased rubber gloves and face masks when the COVID-19 coronavirus first hit local shores.

Thousands of people are now wearing gloves as a way to protect themselves against getting infected with the coronavirus.

However, the World Health Organisation said wearing gloves can be counterproductive as it may prevent people from washing their hands regularly.

Public Health England (PHE) echoed the WHO’s views, saying it does not recommend the use of gloves as a protective measure against COVID-19 for the general public.

Experts also warned that wearing gloves may give people a false sense of security, which may prevent them from washing their hands.

Good things to do

The World Health Organisation has provided six steps which people should follow to protect themselves against the coronavirus:

  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Maintain social distancing.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Practice respiratory hygiene.
  • If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical care early.
  • Stay informed about the latest coronavirus news and information.

If you are asked to be in quarantine, or self-isolate, during COVID-19, the WHO advised the following:

  • During times of stress, pay attention to your own needs and feelings.
  • Engage in healthy activities that you enjoy and find relaxing.
  • Exercise regularly, keep regular sleep routines and eat healthy food.
  • Keep things in perspective.

“If health authorities have recommended limiting your physical social contact to contain the COVID-19 pandemic, you can stay connected via email, social media, video conference, and telephone,” it added.

WHO advice

Now read: Important stats about the coronavirus outbreak in South Africa

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Wearing gloves does not help protect against coronavirus – WHO