Importance of Oral and Nasal Hygiene in COVID-19 Pandemic

We are constantly reminded to wash our hands with soap or alcoholic solutions that kill the coronavirus. But the coronavirus does not live on hands. COVID-19 starts in the upper respiratory tract (URT). The largest load develops in the nasopharynx. From there, it spreads into the lungs through the pharynx mucosal surfaces. Therefore, it stands to reason that we should frequently cleanse the upper respiratory tract: nasal cavity, oral cavity, nasopharynx, and oropharynx. The most promising antiseptic is Povidone-Iodine (PVP-I), because it has been used for this purpose in dentistry and otolaryngology for decades.

PVP-I is active against a broad spectrum of viruses, bacteria, and fungi. Before COVID-19, it was found effective against influenza viruses, common cold coronaviruses, SARS and MERS. No repurposing is needed. Recent trials have confirmed its safety, usability, and efficacy against SARS-COV-2.

Simultaneous mouth rinsing, gargling, and nasal drops of PVP-I, performed a few times daily, provides three benefits: prophylaxis (killing any virus that may land on these mucosal surfaces), preventing transmission to others, and improved clinical outcomes (killing most of the virus on the URT mucosal surfaces before it spreads to the lower respiratory tract).

A well sized clinical trial in Bangladesh showed a nearly 90% decrease in hospitalizations and deaths among patients using PVP-I vs. those in a control group. A review of PVP-I against COVID-19 trials confirms this efficacy. The relevant concentrations (0.5%-1%) do not stain teeth.

PVP-I is recommended by FLCCC as part of early COVID-19 treatment. Listerine and Crest Scope can be used for mouth rinsing and gargling.

PVP-I is used to prevent nosocomial transmission of COVID-19.

Gargling and nasal drops or nasal irrigation may sound like “folk medicine” to some and may be slightly unpleasant.  However, numerous clinical trials, published in peer-reviewed journals, as well as the confirmed use in dentistry and otolaryngology show these practices to be very effective against COVID-19.

PVP-I can be used alongside other prophylactic and therapeutic medicines for COVID-19. Such use is recommended by FLCCC.

Wearing masks outside of healthcare settings has opposite effect of soiling the UR. It is bad hygiene, contradicting 150 years of medical experience. Masks accumulate not only SARS-COV-2, but various pathogens that happen to be in the environment. Adults and children, wearing masks over mouths and noses, can inhale or get those pathogens by contact.

This is not medical advice. There are some contra-indications for using PVP-I. Excessive use of iodine-containing products might interfere with thyroid gland function.

First published in TrialSiteNews on August 20, 2021.

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