Do You Want to Know How Soap Kills Coronavirus?

Handwashing with soap is better than rubbing sanitizer to get rid of the coronavirus from hands. Know how soap kills the virus in this article.

Chanchal Sengar
Written by: Chanchal SengarUpdated at: Mar 18, 2020 15:56 IST
Do You Want to Know How Soap Kills Coronavirus?

The only hot topic these days is ‘Coronavirus’. This global pandemic has captured the lives of people in such a way that we fear stepping out of the house let alone meet someone. As known to one and all, this deadly virus spreads through direct contact with an infected person. Handshake is the most common medium of this spread which is why it is advised that you refrain physical contact with anybody especially if the person shows signs and symptoms of the novel coronavirus(cough, cold, fever, respiratory issues, etc.) Health experts cannot stress enough on the significance of handwashing to prevent this outbreak. World Health Organization started this campaign called ‘The Safe Hands Challenge’ to promote handwashing habits as primary COVID-19 prevention.


Soap is better than sanitizer

There is a lot of debate happening whether soap or sanitizer is better in virus prevention. It was believed that an alcohol-based sanitizer works better than regular soap but health organizations around the globe have a different opinion. WHO as well as the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare(MoHFW) India have spoken in favor of handwashing with soap. Health experts believe that soap is an extremely efficient mode of destroying the germs, bacteria as well as coronavirus from the skin. Alcohol-based sanitizer is good but not as effective as normal soap.

Also Read: Learn To Make Sanitizer at Home

The Science Behind How Soap Kills The Virus

You must be eager to know how soap kills the lethal COVID-19 virus which has taken thousands of lives in a couple of months! The virus of COVID-19 is a self-assembled nanoparticle whose weak link is its bilayer of lipid. Soap has the properties to dissolve this fat membrane which makes the virus weak and it destroys eventually. 

The science behind this theory is that most viruses have three major elements- RNA(Ribonucleic acid), Lipids and proteins. A cell that has got infected with the virus starts to produce these building blocks which further starts self-assembling to multiplicate the virus. These are not strong bonds which can be easily broken with soap. You don’t need harsh chemicals to fight this virus. When the main virus-infected cell dies, the virus will eventually diet without infecting other cells.

Our hands are most exposed to direct contact, are susceptible to get this virus which then enters the mouth if you don’t clean your hands. The tiny droplets of the infected virus stay in the air and you may get them if you are not protected. It is advised that you maintain a 1-meter distance from everybody and wear a mask and wash hands often to prevent getting infected. The virus when it comes in contact with sensitive human skin stays active for hours and even days. The dead cells interact with the virus to attract the fatty acids and proteins present in them. Therefore, one needs to be extra careful.

Also Read: WHO's Safe Hands Challenge For Coronavirus Prevention

The virus gets transferred to your hands whenever you touch a surface that has these nanoparticles. As you touch your face and mouth with your hands, the virus gets transferred and enters your system infecting other cells of the body and victimizing you. 

The soap contains amphiphiles which are fat-like substances that fight the lipids present in the virus thereby destroying the infection. It loosens the bond between the virus and human skin to get rid of it quickly without getting infected by it. Alcohol-based products have similar functioning but not as effective as soap as you wash every possible part of your hands where the virus may attack. Therefore, soap is better.

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