Monthly Archives: January 2021

This One Common Item in Your House Could Be Spreading COVID, Study Finds

By Kali Coleman

Thu, January 21, 2021, 10:38 AM

The coronavirus can easily spread in a multitude of ways, which means you should be taking every measure you can to protect yourself from infection. And while you may think you’re doing everything possible already, recent research is finding new ways to stay safe. According to a new study, one hygiene habit could actually protect you from COVID: disinfecting your toothbrush. Read on to find out how this coronavirus protection measure works, and for more ways to stay healthy, Dr. Fauci Says You Need One of These at Home to Avoid COVID.

You should disinfect your toothbrush because high amounts of COVID live in your mouth.

Brazilian researchers published their findings on how non-disinfected toothbrushes could enable coronavirus spread in The Journal of Infectious Diseases in December. In the study, researchers concluded that toothbrushes “act as reservoirs for microorganisms, favoring the transmission of diseases in heathy and sick individuals.” This is especially concerning during the COVID pandemic because an earlier May study found that high viral loads of coronavirus can be found in the saliva, nasopharynx, and oropharynx—even in asymptomatic patients.

“Thus, disinfection of toothbrushes and hygiene of the oral cavity are important to control the transmission of SARS-CoV-2, especially in asymptomatic individuals or in those who await the test result for COVID-19,” the researchers of the December study explained. And for more on coronavirus and your mouth, If You Notice This in Your Mouth, You Could Have COVID, Experts Warn.

You can disinfect your toothbrush in store-bought mouthwash.

The researchers also referenced another study, published July 2020 in The Journal of Infectious Diseases, which found that certain mouthwashes could actually reduce the viral load of coronavirus in saliva and transmission. According to this study, your mouthwash has to be an antiseptic solution containing ethanol and essential oils, like Listerine Cool Mint.

Disinfecting toothbrushes in this solution may help slow the spread of COVID, according to the researchers of the December study. However, while the previous study found that mouthwash only needed to be held in the mouth for 30 seconds to reduce the viral load present, these researchers say that a toothbrush needs to be immersed in the solution for 20 minutes, as toothbrushes are able to hold on to viral loads longer “due to the presence of bristles and moisture.” And for more guidance on staying safe from COVID, If You Have This Mask, Get a New One Now, Experts Say.

The researchers laid out a six-step process to best disinfect your toothbrush.

Just dipping your toothbrush in a mouthwash solution isn’t going to completely protect you from COVID. Instead, the researchers laid out six steps you should consider following when completing this hygiene task.

The first thing you need to do before touching your toothbrush is to wash your hands with soap and water or disinfect them with hand sanitizer that is at least 70 percent alcohol-based. After that, you can disinfect your toothbrush handle with 70 percent alcohol for one minute. Once those two steps are done, you can brush your teeth. When you are done brushing, you should wash the brush and disinfect the handle with 70 percent alcohol again for one minute. Your mouthwash solution comes next, and you should leave only your brush head immersed in this for 20 minutes. After that, you should let your brush dry and then, preferably, store it away from others. And for more up-to-date information, sign up for our daily newsletter.

And if you’ve had COVID, you should throw your toothbrush away.

Anthony Cardillo, MD, an ER specialist and CEO of Mend Urgent Care in Los Angeles, told ABC that this study should be looked at closely by households with multiple people sharing one bathroom. Toothbrushes in a cup or container on the bathroom counter can definitely aid in “transmitting the virus” between members of the home if someone is infected, even if they are asymptomatic.

If you know you have COVID, Cardillo says you should keep your toothbrush in a separate area, while disinfecting it regularly. Once you’re done with your infection, “you should really get rid of that toothbrush and use a fresh, brand new one,” he says. And if think you may have had the virus, If You Have This Subtle Symptom, You Might Have Already Had COVID.


Rochester alpaca farm launches gift shop, self-guided tours for winter

Written By: Anne Halliwell | Jan 13th 2021 – 2pm.

The farm has been around for about eight years, but 2021 is the first year they’ve been open during the winter.

Alpacas are pictured Monday, Jan. 11, 2021, at Pauley Alpaca Company in Rochester. (Traci Westcott / [email protected])

The latest addition to Pauley Alpaca Company is the first building visitors see when they pull in — just stop right at the “Alpaca Lover Parking Only” sign.

Co-owner Brett Pauley said that over the past few years, the Rochester farm (4220 Eastwood Road SE) has clocked visitors from about 40 countries.

And they’ve managed that with mandatory wintertime closures — until now.

The farm, which keeps alpacas (and goats, chickens, rabbits and a couple extremely friendly barn cats) will celebrate the new gift shop with an open house and bonfire Saturday.

The farm has been around for about eight years, but 2021 is the first year it’s been open during the winter.

Previously, the family kept their gift shop in the barn near the goat pens, which has a slope leading up to its entrance in the back.

“As soon as the snow fell off the roof, it’d block our way up, and we’d basically be closed until the spring,” Pauley said.

However, the new gift shop serves as a hand-washing station, a warming center, and a place to buy and sell those super-soft yarns and fiber products — all necessary parts of staying open over winter in Minnesota.

Although the Pauleys are advertising “self-guided” tours of the farm over the winter, the family does live there, so visitors may find themselves in an impromptu guided tour, depending on when they come.

“The most gratifying thing I think we get out of it is the laughter and smiles, and the selfies people take with the animals,” Pauley said. “We love to share that.”

If you don’t catch them around, though, here are a few things to check off your list before you leave:

?Give the alpacas a pet. The most recognizable two are Eleanor (who has a mop of caramel-brown hair and is likely to crane her head out for a pet) and Ruby (all-black and gorgeous). But they all have names you can learn at

Say hello to the “Department of Land Development.” That’s what the Pauleys call their goats, who eat the buckthorn and other invasive plants growing on the hillside. Right now, they’re working on this year’s Christmas tree, but they’ll have that land cleared in no time!

Watch out for the security team! Luna and Nemo, the Pauleys’ cats, like to follow visitors through open doors. Keep an eye out!

?Find your friends in the gift shop. While the lighter-colored wool is dyed bright colors, several of the alpacas’ yarn is undyed (and marked with their faces).

If you go

What: Gift shop opening and self-guided tours

When: 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 16 and 30

Where: Pauley Alpaca Company, 4220 Eastwood Road SE, Rochester

Cost: Free

More information: Keep an eye on for hours.

Minnesota Wild Crossword

Tired of binge watching television and scrolling through social media while you wait around for the vaccine? Want to give your brain a little boost in activity? Looking to celebrate the Minnesota Wild’s 20th anniversary in a different kind of way? Check out our Minnesota Wild crossword puzzle.

Think you know the Wild? Here’s your chance to find out. Every answer is in some way connected to the team. Good luck and most of all have fun!

(If you’ve solved it, or given up, feel free to click on the answer key provided below.)

FOX Sports North Minnesota Wild crossword puzzle answer key:…/Wild-Crossword-Puzzle-ANSWER-KEY.pdf