Question & Answer

Can spraying alcohol or chlorine on your body stop you from becoming infected with the new coronavirus?

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  • There is no evidence that spraying alcohol or chlorine on your body will stop you from becoming infected with the new coronavirus (WHO 2020).
  • The COVID-19 virus is a respiratory infection that affects your lungs, airways and breathing. The virus is mainly spread through droplets of saliva (spit) or discharge from the nose that move into the air when an infected person coughs or sneezes (WHO 2020). These droplets can be breathed in by, or land on others nearby – this is why physical distancing is so important.
  • Washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand sanitisers helps remove germs from hands. This helps prevent infections, because people often touch their face without realising it. This means that germs from unwashed hands can enter your body, and they may cause infection (CDC 2020).
  • To protect yourself and others from coronavirus, please follow public health advice and wash your hands properly and often.

Things to Remember

Reviewers

  • Drafted by: Elaine Finucane, School of Nursing and Midwifery and HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network, NUI Galway
  • Reviewed by: Prof Declan Devane, College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network, Evidence Synthesis Ireland & Cochrane Ireland, NUI Galway
  • Reviewed by: Dr Tom Conway, HRB Clinical Research Facility HRB-Trials Methodology Research Network, NUI Galway
  • Evidence Advisor: Prof Andrew Murphy, College of Medicine, Nursing and Health Sciences, NUI Galway, Health Research Board Primary Care Clinical Trials Network Ireland and General Practitioner principal in a semi-rural setting
  • Evidence Advisor (Public): Mark Finucane, Public Evidence Advisor
  • Evidence Advisor (Journalistic): Dr Claire O’Connell, Contributor, The Irish Times.