CDC instructs Americans to avoid singing, loud music and alcohol for holidays
Holidays in the United States will look radically different this year. The CDC has yet again come out with new guidelines for the coronavirus and the holidays. They are recommending that if you want to prevent the spread of the disease, you should give up caroling, loud music, and alcohol. That mandate was just issued according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
On Wednesday, the CDC published a holiday-focused health and safety guideline. It details considerations of steps that Americans should take if they are having or are attending gatherings for the holidays. It also covers if they plan to have people stay overnight. The guidelines suggest people modify their holiday activities to minimize the spread of COVID-19.
“Encourage guests to avoid singing or shouting, especially indoors,” states the bulleted CDC point. “Keep music levels down so people don’t have to shout or speak loudly to be heard.”
According to some researchers, the coronavirus is primarily transmitted from person-to-person through respiratory droplets like saliva. Actions like singing or raising your voice can allegedly increase a person’s chance of exposure.
The reasoning behind social distancing of at least six feet is that sneezing and coughing increase the chance of someone coming into contact with a respiratory droplet. Social distancing supposedly decreases your risk of coming into contact with these droplets.
Those that still want to gather at home are encouraged to avoid direct contact – meaning no handshakes or hugs this holiday season with people outside your household.
Planning for #Thanksgiving? Consider hosting a virtual meal with friends and family who don’t live with you. Have people share recipes and show off their turkey, dressing, and other dishes: https://t.co/zLzjYg5X6P. pic.twitter.com/HtT92bqe9t
— CDC (@CDCgov) November 17, 2020
When attending a gathering, the CDC suggests taking steps such as bringing your own food, avoiding going in and out of the areas where food is being prepared, and using single-use options, like disposable eating utensils and plates.
The CDC has also labeled alcohol consumption as a high-risk activity. The CDC states: “Using alcohol or drugs that may alter judgment and make it more difficult to practice COVID-19 safety measures.”
It doesn’t end there. Other holiday activities such as shopping in crowded stores around Thanksgiving, participating or watching a crowded race, attending a parade, or large indoor gatherings with people who aren’t from your household are also verboten. These activities are considered high-risk as well.
The CDC is recommending small dinners within your household this season and that you should deliver food to family members contact-free, hosting a virtual gathering, shopping online, and watching sports or parades from home.
If you must have a large gathering of family for the holidays, the CDC recommends wearing face masks and having hand sanitizers (that contain at least 60% alcohol) or handwashing stations available for guests. You should also social distance within your home. Better yet, if you are holding a large gathering, they recommend you do so outside.
After the event, it is recommended that you quarantine for 14 days to minimize exposing others to the virus.