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Stay Away From Me, You Make Me Sick

Published on: March 17, 2020

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Namaste (left) recommended to replace handshakes, elbow bumps and footshakes, is a traditional Hindu greeting in everyday use in India. The palms are pressed together at the chest or head accompanied by a slight bow. Social distancing (right photo) in a literal sense means staying at least six feet away from other people to lessen your chances of catching COVID-19.

The CDC defines social distancing as “remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible.”

As of March 15, 2020 the CDC, in accordance with its guidance for large events and mass gatherings, recommends that for the next 8 weeks, organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the United States.

According to a professor of¬†medical social science at Northwestern University’s Feinberg School of Medicine, humans are wired to be social creatures, and that’s how we cope when a big disaster happens. ¬†Now, we’re being told to cope with this by staying away from each other.

What happens without touch and physical interaction?

Researchers discovered that babies aged zero to five simply do not receive enough stimulation in group residential care to develop to their full capacity. When trying to figure out why some orphanages had infant mortality rates around 30-40%, we learned that orphanages are not suitable places for infants.

It’s not just babies who need interaction with other humans–28.9 percent and 31.2 percent of respondents under quarantine during the SARS epidemic faced traumatic stress disorder and depression.

Today a family member came back from her morning exercise and said it was odd. The lady she has walked with for years insisted on walking 6 feet apart–they didn’t converse.

When I met my tax preparer this week I was shunned as I offered the man my packet of papers. “Leave them on the desk,” he said. He’s now requesting that no one come into his office because he doesn’t know where they’ve been.

CDC guidance remains in place at least through the month of March.

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