Spitting is the act of throwing out saliva or other substances from the mouth. Spiting is usually done to throw out surplus or foul-tasting stuff from the mouth or to get rid of large saliva produced in the mouth.
Spitting in public places is uncivilized and socially not tolerable across the globe. Shameful & indiscriminate spitting is widespread particularly in South Asia more so in India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Myanmar, Nepal & Bhutan.
World Health Organization (WHO) in its COVID-19 prevention itinerary has alerted essentially on social distancing, wearing of mask & frequent hand washing practices. WHO has not seriously deliberated & warned on the worst effects of spitting at public places. The public health experts are of the opinion that spitting can cause the spread of COVID-19 as the saliva of an infected person can carry the virus for more than 24 hours. However, not enough focus is being given on stopping people from spitting in open or in public places. WHO has been selective and has ignored the social & behavioral practices of developing countries.
myarogya.in team is striving hard to create awareness on various public health issues with the sole aim of creating a healthier society. ‘Stop Spitting Movement’ is the latest mission of the team. This sickening spitting habit is the cause of the spread of Tuberculosis and other viral/bacterial diseases. The spatter has no concern for the environment, fellow citizens and is the least health-conscious. The section of the people who eat no smoke tobacco, gutkha, khaini, pan masala, supari, chewing gum, etc spit anywhere and everywhere with no concern. They spit while walking, riding the bike, traveling in public transport through windows, driving their own vehicles. These stupid people unleash a stream of saliva directly in the path of people. Saliva carries live germs for more than 24 hours and can cause every respiratory disease including COVID-19. The droplets of the spit may enter the respiratory system and transmission may occur when these droplets enter the mouths, noses, or eyes of people who are nearby. The spit contains mucus which is a home for many kinds of germs.
This is the most appropriate time for the Belagavi city Corporation to create a massive drive against the spitting. The onus is on the Corporation leadership; as a part of the smart city program, it has to take up this new initiative which will be hailed by the community in particular and other municipalities/corporations can replicate this smart practice of ‘No Spitting’ in public places. The political leadership, district administration, institutions, offices, business houses, etc join their hands in this mission of putting a brake to the social evil of Spitting.
Stringent action: The vibrant, learned & concerned citizens of beautiful Belagavi will have to join their hands for a healthy, clean, green city by making spitting a punishable offense because of the public health risks associated with it. There is an urgent need to create awareness of the disastrous effects of spitting in a public place by imposing penalties on defaulters.
If you are spat, what you should do
If you are in the unfortunate situation that you are spat at, the National Health Services (NHS), Britain recommends you should:
• Immediately wash the saliva off with soap and lots of water
• If the saliva goes into your eyes, nose or mouth wash it out with lots of cold water
• If you think you’re at risk of infection, get immediate medical advice
• Indian Council for Medical Research (ICMR) has also appealed people to refrain from consuming smokeless tobacco products and spitting in public places.
• Under the Epidemic Diseases Act, the Disaster Management Act and under various provisions of the Indian Penal Code 1860 and the Code of Criminal Procedure (CrPc) to deal with COVID-19. In this background, necessary preventive measures may be taken under the appropriate law to prohibit the use and spitting of chewing smokeless tobacco products in public.”
Request: myarogya.in requests citizens to spread the mission of “Stop Spitting Movement” and be part of eradicating this social evil. If you want to be part of this mass movement, please forward to all groups.
Dr. Pamod N Sulikeri, Ph.D E mail: [email protected]