Study finds ‘loud talkers’ are more likely to spread coronavirus

Haha *hyperventilates*

August 12 2020

Tendency to talk at 100 decibels? You might wanna turn the volume down a touch. It turns out people with loud voices are more likely to spread COVID-19. 

In a report out of the US National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases, researchers measured the amount of droplets that come out of a person’s mouth when they speak, how far these droplets travel and how long they remain in the air.

“With just regular loud talking there are about a thousand of these little droplets that would come out in a second, and at peak it was about 10,000 per second that would come out,” Professor Benjamin Newman, Chair of Biological Sciences at Texas A&M University told 3AW radio station.

“Absolutely disgusting!”

What’s more concerning? These droplets can stick around for minutes at a time, potentially infecting anyone who comes in contact. 

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“The little droplets would hang in the air for about eight minutes,” he added. “But the large droplets lasted longer, they lasted up to 14 minutes.”

This explains why coronavirus clusters break out so rapidly in small areas where a person who has tested positive is present, causing a “chain of transmission.” For example, cruise ships, nursing homes and restaurants such as Thai Rock in Sydney, which, to date, has been linked to more than 100 COVID-19 cases.  

“It isn’t about the virus, it’s often about the behaviours, settings and how infectious people are at the time,” NSW chief health officer Dr Kerry Chant explained in a press conference on Monday. 

“Some of the large numbers (like Thai Rock) reflect those chains going on – you bring it home, three or four people in your household get infected.”

“It may be using a loud voice or bursting into song,” she continued. “That can lead to the projection of droplets and potentially aerosols, and so that’s why people close to them can be affected.”

Bottom line? Wear a mask or use your 'indoor' voice anytime you're out and about!

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