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How experts Rate Risks Of Summer Activities?

News Admin Monday, 25th of May 2020

After two months of being locked up in quarantine, many of us have this urge to just go out and enjoy summer. But did you consider what's safe? We took some advice from public health experts and asked them to rate the risk of almost every summer activity, from spending a day at pool, backyard gathering, attending a wedding, going to the beach, and more.


Consider the following: Your personal risk depends on many things such as your age, health state, precautions you take (wearing a mask during these activities for instance). And you should also consider checking your local laws in your state because some of them are still restricting most of the activities described here.


And you need to know that there is always a risk when you consider going outside. There is no such thing called zero-risk, If you are outside there is always a percentage of risk. President Donald Trump has assured that his medical team in the white house is working on different solutions to protect people from the virus and carry on businesses in the country.


He also added that there might be some collateral damage in the period of releasing restraints, he carried on "We can't stay home all the three in coming years, our country's economy needs to be revived".


He also assured that the social distancing restraints have led to more suicide and drugs, and he said "People are losing their jobs. We need to give them back what they lost, and we are working on that".


That being said, this is summer and most people want to enjoy and spend some quality time either alone, or with their loved ones.


Some well-known experts shared their thoughts with us via phone and e-mail interviews.


The summer activities include Restaurant; Backyard gathering; Beach or pool; Getting a haircut; Camping; Shopping malls; Outdoor sports; Hotels; Worship services.


1. Going to an indoor restaurant: Medium to high risk


Eating at a restaurant is considered to be among the riskiest activity you can do, since you are more exposed to the virus, from dishes, foods, surroundings, and even the table you are sitting at.


What alters the risk? Moe says that the risk level depends on the adaptation of the restaurant with the pandemic. Did they reduce and space on seating? Do servers wear masks? How well are washing stations organized? And do they offer easy access to these stations?


They should close all self-serving areas such as soda fountains or buffet tables, and also provide a single-use or one-use options for condiments.


Make sure you always look for outdoor seating, since you are obliged to mask-off in order to eat, and you should not be in the close proximity of people whatsoever.


2. Backyard gatherings (BYOB): Low to medium risk


Being in close proximity to a small group of people isn't too risky, especially if they are your friends or your loved ones. However, our experts say that you have to make sure that people you are inviting are people that you trust, maybe some of your close friends or close family. You can't just start inviting random friends or random people to your backyard gatherings. It will put you at so much risk despite all the precautions you take. And it could be much better if you invite people who have followed social distancing procedures, this would be then a very low-risk activity.


What alters the risk? In order to lower the risk, try as much as you can to avoid sharing drinks, food, utensils, and try to make it a BYO everything party.


You should watch out for drinking, as it will make you sloppy about social distancing. Consider moderate amounts of drinks to reduce the risks.


3. Spending the day in a public pool or beach: Low risk


As long as you stick to social distancing procedures, you are good to go, and this is a very safe activity, our experts say.


Dr. Janowski assures that water itself is not a risk since the sheer volume of water will dilute out the virus; hence, the water is not going to be a source of infection.


What alters the risk? If you go to the beach you should at least stay six feet or more from the people around you.


watch out for places that are very crowded like bathrooms and entry points. Try as much as you can to maintain distance on both land and water.


If you are planning to go to the beach or the pool, your biggest concern should be kids, since they tend to make friends with everyone and start running around with other people's kids.


Choose the beach over the pool, for the beach is bigger and better in terms of space. Always go early in the morning or late afternoon because crowds are lower at these particular times.


4. Haircut: Medium to high risk


getting a haircut involves close contact and breathing with the barber, and the process could take several minutes. That being said, It is a very high-risk activity that everyone should avoid .


it's nearly impossible to keep 6 feet distance from someone cutting your hair. The virus could move on from a customer to the worker, and then from the worker to other customers.


What alters the risk? It is better to avoid getting a haircut at a barbershop or a salon. You could do it yourself or make someone do it for you at home. However, our experts assure that if both you and the barber are wearing masks, the risk is relatively low. Always look for a barbershop that respects all policies for customers and employee's protection.

5. Nightclub: High risk


If there is any place for the virus to spread faster than ever, it's the night club. Crowds, people sweating, singing, very close contact, high consumption of alcohol that leads to sloppiness, and maybe unconsciousness, black-outs. There will be no social distancing in such a place, which means more virus is being shed.


This is a very high-risk place that could lead to an outbreak. So stay away from bars and clubs right now.

What alters the risk? Nothing could alter the risk in such a place right now. So if you want to have some fun, just do it from your home.


6. Camping: Low risk


Our experts think of this activity as the safest one right now. You are unlikely to get infected while going camping, since you are going to be with a group of people friends or family that you trust, taking into consideration that they have been doing social distancing and following all the procedures and guidelines. If not, that is a big problem and someone could spread the virus.

What alters the risk? are you not camping alone with your family? Are any crowds close to the place where you are camping? do you share any restroom or communal picnic areas with other people? Do you sleep in tents together (not in your household)? If the answer is No to all of these questions, then you're good to go. If yes, then you need to reconsider camping activities, for it's not safe and there could be a small risk of infection.


7. Shopping mall: Risk varies


Shopping malls are different, and how risky the situation depends on what kind of mall you are going to. How much crowded? How much time you are going to spend there? the higher the crowds, the higher the risks. You should always avoid crowded malls, our experts say.


What alters the risk? outdoor malls are always a priority over indoor malls because they are less crowded and a lot safer. Make a list of things you want to buy, wear your mask, go to the mall, buy everything you need, and go out. always go with purpose, not to play around or you think of it as leisure time.


Avoid contact with anyone in the mall, maintain your space, and always choose to go at the off-peak hours.


8. Exercising outdoors: Low risk


Exercising outdoors is always a good way to burn off steam. However, you should avoid group sports, and contact sports like football or basketball. Always go for sports like tennis or golf, for they are much safer and you can always maintain your social distancing while you're in action. Jogging for few miles is okay too, as long as you are avoiding crowded places.


What alters the risk? The more people are involved in that particular activity, the higher the chance of getting infected. So it's always better to exercise doing sports mentioned above, and always avoid close contact sports.


9. Religious services: High risk


religious services such as churches always bring people from different places that gather for a very extended amount of time. There is always a chance of an outbreak in a church, so there is a big potential for people to get infected very fast in a church.


What alters the risk? Wear your mask, and keep your social distancing. Also, avoid singing and sharing any worship item while in church like hymnals, and preferably try to go to attend worship services in an outdoor area, if by any chance, there is one at your local place.


10. Staying in a hotel: Low to medium risk


Staying in a hotel has a medium to low risk of exposure, considering the fact that you are staying in your room most of the time.  Also, You should avoid common areas such as the restaurant, the lobby, the elevator, the gym where there could be a higher chance of exposure.


What alters the risk? Disinfecting wipes are a must when you consider staying in a hotel. They will help you clean the  TV remote and other common surfaces, and you should also consider removing the bedspread since there might be a chance that they are not cleaned after each guest. Choose a hotel that follows all the guidelines and the new virus protocols.

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