Methods of social distancing during the Coronavirus pandemic
The Coronavirus pandemic shook the world when the news of the disease spreading across nations came to light. Even though epidemics have been witnessed in the past, the sheer magnitude of the pandemic was clearly unprecedented. Precautionary measures were imposed by way of lockdowns and social distancing to cope with the far-reaching impact of the virus. Adapting to the situation and making most of the situation at hand meant that people would have to shift to a work-from-home culture while also practising home quarantine if anyone was sick or tested positive for the virus.
Despite the development of vaccines and a slight improvement in the overall global scale, partial lockdowns, social distancing and wearing masks at all times are some practises that are still strictly followed so that the situation as such doesn’t aggravate. Regardless of the status of the pandemic, these practises are now seen as hygienic ways of dealing with the spread of other bugs and even the common cold or flu.
You might have noticed that as you visit grocery stores, banks, government establishments, airports or any other place with counters (for billing or any other reason), clear sheets, curtains or glass is used as a way of maintaining some form of social distancing. These have proven to be quite effective as a method of social distancing in addition with wearing masks, gloves and frequent sanitising. While masking and sanitising are fundamental methods of preventing spread of the virus, they aren’t entirely enough to stop the spread of any communicable disease.
Window treatments like clear plastic shades or curtains are quite useful in the sense that they create a larger barrier between two people for the purpose of preventing germs from latching onto two hosts. That being said, if you own or manage a shop or any other establishment that has frequent visitors or if you or someone you live with is faced with the unfortunate need to quarantine themselves, certain window treatments come highly recommended to create distance between people.
Society is faced with the choice of having to adapt and operate as normally as possible without taking any unnecessary risks to keep things afloat. You can ensure that by enforcing social distancing with some innovative ideas.
Window Treatments that can help with social distancing
- Clear Plastic Shades – These are one of the primary candidates that are highly recommended for social distancing for shops, establishments, booths and even homes. These are also known as ‘clear vinyl shades’ and they tick all the right boxes for a window treatment that would help in social distancing.
While the aim is to distance one person from others, it is logical that communication shouldn’t be disabled. This is why clear plastic shades can be very useful in creating a barrier while being transparent enough to enable communication between two parties. Besides that, these shades have other important priorities. For instance, they can provide protection against glare or heat as well. This is precisely why they are featured in restaurants and corporate offices. They are also affordable and easy to install. You can use them to divide a room into two as well.
- Clear Plastic Curtains – While clear plastic shades have been used as conventional window treatments that can now also be repurposed into barriers for social distancing, clear plastic curtains have been known to be used for social distancing even before the covid pandemic. They are used in laboratories, factories and hospitals too. High quality PVC curtains have been manufactured for industrial use for quite some time now.
They are also really good at shielding particles that are airborne or can be spread through contact with respiratory particles. They also offer protection from extreme temperatures. The key difference between plastic curtains and shades are the fact that curtains have more mobility and it is easier to get clear plastic curtains for bigger rooms because of the dimensions that come in as they were meant for social distancing purposes as opposed to shades which only cover windows.
- Bathroom Curtains – Clear shades and curtains are the most preferred window treatments that can be used for social distancing if you have had the time to plan and buy them for place of work or home. But, during an emergency or an unforeseen situation where someone needs to quarantine themselves and a room must be divided, you can resort to using your bathroom curtains (preferably a spare one).
While bathroom curtains will not give you the kind of visibility that clear curtains and shades do, they are durable and moisture resistant and can act as a decent barrier for social distancing. They are also a little more versatile in the sense that they have more variations in their colour, patterns and texture.
- Transparent solar shades – These counts as a unique pick. While they have a similar functionality to clear plastic shades that they also offer protection from glare, UV rays and harmful lighting. If your establishment or home is planned in such a way that excessive direct lighting can affect your work (regardless of whether it is artificial or natural sunlight). Transparent solar shades are also unique in the sense that they give you ventilation and visibility while protecting you from excessive sunlight.
The effectiveness of window shades, blinds and curtains
A crucial aspect of social distancing is good air flow. Increased air flow slows down the spread of the disease via respiratory droplets. This means that in an effort to maintain social distancing, being completely closed off is not the solution. Curtains, shades and blinds have different light control settings that also allows you to direct air flow. This is true for all window coverings, even the ones that haven’t been mentioned specifically in this blog.
It is also important to remember that the key to safety doesn’t lie in solely relying on curtains or shades. It is important to initiate other preventive measures in tandem with window coverings. The basics of social distancing include wearing masks and gloves, limited entry of people in a room, maintaining a gap of few feet between each person and sanitisation. Until the world returns to a semblance of normalcy, we can use these guidelines, improvise, adapt and overcome our current circumstances.