Had you ever thought that one day you will be scared to even pick up a newspaper from your own balcony? Scared to open a door to your nearest grocery store? Or scared to even pet a dog on your way? Well, nobody thought of this fear six months ago and yet somehow every one today is.  


The fear of coronavirus has let to a lot of misconceptions and fears. This is primarily because since coronavirus is still novel (meaning new), there are still a lot of things about its spread that scientists and researchers don’t know yet.  

Here is a list of things that COVID-19 can and cannot spread through based on what we know so far.

1. Newspapers: Cannot Give You Coronavirus 

Several leading scientists and epidemiologist have said that newspapers cannot spread the novel Coronavirus. Nivedita Gupta, chief epidemiologist at the Indian Council of Medical Research, in an interview to the Economic Times said that COVID-19 is a “respiratory infection” and there is “no risk” of catching it through newspapers. 

Director of National Centre for Disease Control, Sujeet Singh, also said, “ “Investigating virologists have not found any evidence that suggests that it can survive on paper.” 


2. Credit or Debit Cards: Can Give You Coronavirus

According to a recent study by Harvard Medical School, coronavirus can live up to 2-3 days on plastic or stainless steel. Most credit or debit cards are made up of either plastic or steel, and thus are prone to spreading SARS-CoV-2.   


3. Online Packages: Can Give You Coronavirus 

Your cardboard packages can possibly give you coronavirus as researchers have found no infectious SARS-CoV-2 on cardboard after 24 hours. On the other hand, the SARS-CoV-2 virus can stay for 72 hours on plastic or steel containers.


4. Mobile Phone: Can Give You Coronavirus 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention considers your phone a “high-touch surface,” which could make it a carrier of the virus. During SARS and MERS, coronaviruses stayed on glass screens for up to 3 days. Research has shown that the COVID-19 coronavirus is stable up to 72 hours on stainless steel and plastic, which are used to make a phone’s shell.


5. Food: Cannot Give You Coronavirus  

There’s no evidence that COVID-19 (the disease) or SARS-Cov-2 (the virus) is transmitted through food, as thorough cooking can kill the virus.  


6. Air: Can Maybe Give You Coronavirus 

While COVID-19 is not an air-borne disease, the airborne droplets left behind when someone sneezes or coughs can stay in the air for around 3 hours.


7. Sex: It’s Complicated 

COVID-19 is not a sexually transmitted disease. However, needless to say, you would have to be close to someone to have sex and that can probably give you the virus.


8. Dogs or Cats: Cannot Give You Coronavirus 

There has been zero evidence to prove that dogs or cats can pass on the virus to human beings. 


Now, that you have some clarity on how COVID-19 spreads in real life, it’s best you start taking precautions, like disinfecting credit cards and mobile phones, for the same. Better safe than sorry!