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How loud you talk may influence how likely you are to spread coronavirus

Ross and Russel
Article image for How loud you talk may influence how likely you are to spread coronavirus

Loud talkers may more readily spread viruses, including coronavirus, than quieter speakers, a new study has revealed.

The report from the US National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases tested how many droplets come out of a person’s mouth when they speak, how far those droplets travel, and how long they remain in the air.

Chair of Biological Sciences at Texas A&M University, Professor Benjamin Newman, said a staggering number of droplets are released from our mouths when we talk.

“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,” he told 3AW’s Ross and John.

“Absolutely disgusting!”

Surprisingly, researchers found that larger saliva droplets remain in the air for longer than smaller droplets.

“The little droplets would hang in the air for about eight minutes,” Professor Neuman said.

“But the large droplets lasted longer, they lasted up to 14 minutes.”

The research helps explain why coronavirus clusters break out so readily in confined areas like cruise ships and nursing homes.

“Loud talking is definitely a plausible way that the virus can spread,” Professor Neuman said.

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Ross and Russel
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