Hygiene, empirical

Empirically effective hygiene

How do I avoid infectious disease? What is the best trade-off of robust-immune-health versus exposure to nasty pathogens? Do particulate masks do anything useful against disease? What?

I am no particular expert here. Perhaps I can outsource my thinking on this issue to the useful obsessives on the internet?

TBD: Does covering things with copper help?

Hygiene instincts

How are we so bad at avoiding contagion? Are other animals any better? Keyword: “Disgust instinct”.



see hygienic masks


“063 - Antimicrobial Copper Surfaces for Reducing Hospital-Acquired Infection Risk.” 2016, 34.
Boyce, John M. 2004. “New Insights for Improving Hand Hygiene Practices.” Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology 25 (3): 187–88. https://doi.org/10.1086/502374.
Curtis, Valerie, Mícheál de Barra, and Robert Aunger. 2011. “Disgust as an Adaptive System for Disease Avoidance Behaviour.” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 366 (1563): 389–401. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2010.0117.
Davey, Graham C. L. 2011. “Disgust: The Disease-Avoidance Emotion and Its Dysfunctions.” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 366 (1583): 3453–65. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2011.0039.
Fischer, Emma P., Martin C. Fischer, David Grass, Isaac Henrion, Warren S. Warren, and Eric Westman. 2020. “Low-Cost Measurement of Facemask Efficacy for Filtering Expelled Droplets During Speech.” Science Advances, August, eabd3083. https://doi.org/10.1126/sciadv.abd3083.
Mitze, Timo, Reinhold Kosfeld, Johannes Rode, and Klaus Wälde. 2020. “Unmasked! The Effect of Face Masks on the Spread of COVID-19.” VoxEU.org. June 22, 2020. https://voxeu.org/article/unmasked-effect-face-masks-spread-covid-19.
Oaten, Megan, Richard J. Stevenson, and Trevor I. Case. 2011. “Disease Avoidance as a Functional Basis for Stigmatization.” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 366 (1583): 3433–52. https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2011.0095.
Sarabian, Cecile, Val Curtis, and Rachel McMullan. 2018. “Evolution of Pathogen and Parasite Avoidance Behaviours†.” Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society B: Biological Sciences 373 (1751). https://doi.org/10.1098/rstb.2017.0256.
Taylor, L. J. 1978. “An Evaluation of Handwashing Techniques.” Nursing Times 74 (3): 108–10.
Yasuyuki, Miyano, Koyama Kunihiro, Sreekumari Kurissery, Nandakumar Kanavillil, Yoshiro Sato, and Yasushi Kikuchi. 2010. “Antibacterial Properties of Nine Pure Metals: A Laboratory Study Using Staphylococcus Aureus and Escherichia Coli.” Biofouling 26 (7): 851–58. https://doi.org/10.1080/08927014.2010.527000.

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