According to experts, they do not effectively protect against contagion and, in addition, they give a sense of false protection
No, plastic gloves – used in the way we are used to doing it – do not effectively protect against coronavirus and, in addition, give a dangerous sense of false protection. To reiterate this, together with many infectious disease and virologist experts, is the World Health Organization. Plastic gloves, writes WHO, can "increase the risk of infection, since they can lead toself-contamination or transmission to others when touching contaminated surfaces and therefore the face ”.
How many times, in the aisles of the supermarket, do you see buyers wearing gloves, taking a pack of pasta from the shelf, putting it back in place, touching their faces and taking out the phone to answer a call? From what we know, coronavirus is mainly transmitted through the droplets expelled into the air, but it cannot be excluded that the infection also occurs through the contact with infected surfaces (studies show that the virus can live on surfaces for up to 72 hours): if an infected person had previously touched that pack of pasta, the buyer could have transferred the virus to his gloves, then to his face and, again, on his phone. "What's the use of gloves?" Asks Sally Bloomfield, professor at London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. “While walking through the supermarket, you can touch your nose, mouth and eyes with gloved hands. The only reason gloves might be useful to you is to remind you that you shouldn't touch your face. "
So why do healthcare workers use them in hospitals? The truth is that doctors and nurses are trained to use gloves properly. This also means remove them safely: grasp the outside of the first glove by the wrist and detach it from the hand, pulling it outwards, then remove the second by putting your fingers inside the glove, at the top of the wrist, and pull without touching the outside, before dispose of them.
The World Health Organization recalls that the regular hand washing – or disinfection with sanitizing gels – offers greater protection against Covid-19 than using rubber gloves. Not to mention the ecological issue: gloves are often dispersed in the environment rather than properly disposed of in the bins. This is not only a (huge) problem for the environment and wildlife, but also, if abandoned by an infected person, for those who have to collect them, such as a child.