Fresh Air as a Disinfectant

You may have remember seeing the crazy footage of Siberian nursery school children running around outside in their underwear, pouring icy buckets of water over themselves.

If this jogs your memory and you want to know more, the article is here.

The reason they performed this daily ritual, even in extreme toe numbing temperatures, was that teachers and doctors claimed it kept them healthy. Surprisingly, the children also looked like they were having a whale of a time.

Now, while I’m not suggesting we should all strip off and run through the garden sprinkler, or perform some naked trampolining, until it’s a little bit warmer (unless you really feel inclined), there does seem to be some truth to this..

In the 1960’s, the Ministry of Defence scientists proved that fresh air is actually a disinfectant. Although they couldn’t identify exactly how it killed germs, the gave it a name – the OPEN-AIR FACTOR.

The Open-air factor was found to be far more harmful to airborne microbes, in particular the influenza virus, than indoor air, both day and night.

Sadly, hospitals aren’t set up to treat patients in the open air. But we can use this information to enhance our ‘keeping healthy at home’ regime. Here’s a few ideas…

  1. Get the kids out into the garden a few times every day (rain or shine)
  2. If you don’t have a garden, go find an empty field to run around
  3. For a change of scene, how about a garden swap with another family?
  4. Open windows and doors wide to let the air sweep through your home
  5. Hang washing outside to dry on the line
  6. Remember to get some fresh air yourself. You need to stay well to look after the family

Have you any top tips for getting the kids out into the fresh air whilst also trying to social distance? Please post your comments here.

Together we can get through this. Stay well.

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