NOV 07, 2018 7:36 PM PST

Here's How Far Your Sneeze Can Travel

WRITTEN BY: Anthony Bouchard

When you get stuck with a cold or the flu, sneezes are inevitable. But have you ever wondered how far your sneezes travel? As it turns out, your sneeze may go a lot further than you think.

With each sneeze, your lungs may expel up to one full water bottle worth of mucus into the air around you. When the moist air leaves your mouth, it’s traveling at up to 35 meters per second. Researchers have found that the largest mucus droplets go up to two meters away, while the smaller ones keep riding the turbulent cloud until they’re more than 8 meters away.

If you work in an office building, one sneeze can travel more than eight desks away from you. But even worse, those mucus clouds can be sucked up by air vents and spat out in other parts of a building where your germs can incubate on commonly-touched surfaces like doorknobs and handrails. There, strains of the flu virus can survive for up to 24 hours.

So while a small sneeze might seem like nothing more than a minor inconvenience to you, keep in mind that your germs will spread quickly and may get many other people sick.

About the Author
Fascinated by scientific discoveries and media, Anthony found his way here at LabRoots, where he would be able to dabble in the two. Anthony is a technology junkie that has vast experience in computer systems and automobile mechanics, as opposite as those sound.
You May Also Like
APR 28, 2022
Drug Discovery & Development
Keto Molecule Shows Promise for Treating Colorectal Cancer
APR 28, 2022
Keto Molecule Shows Promise for Treating Colorectal Cancer
A molecule produced when on low-carbohydrate ketogenic diets suppresses the growth of colorectal tumors in the lab. The ...
MAY 04, 2022
Clinical & Molecular DX
A New Sleep Molecule Has Been Discovered
MAY 04, 2022
A New Sleep Molecule Has Been Discovered
Scientists have long known that a molecule called hypocretin regulates sleep. It can also influence two sleep disorders: ...
MAY 11, 2022
Neuroscience
Poor Eyesight Skews Cognitive Test Results
MAY 11, 2022
Poor Eyesight Skews Cognitive Test Results
 Undiagnosed eyesight problems may impair the scores of those over 50 years old in cognitive tests. The correspondi ...
MAY 12, 2022
Genetics & Genomics
A Genetic Mutation That Improves Intelligence
MAY 12, 2022
A Genetic Mutation That Improves Intelligence
The genetic mutations that have been studied the most are those that have been linked to human disease, but what about m ...
MAY 16, 2022
Neuroscience
Sleep Allows Our Brains to Process Emotions
MAY 16, 2022
Sleep Allows Our Brains to Process Emotions
With neuroimaging and electrophysiological techniques, researchers have gained new insights into dreaming. Scientists ha ...
MAY 20, 2022
Health & Medicine
What to Know About the Recent Monkeypox Outbreak
MAY 20, 2022
What to Know About the Recent Monkeypox Outbreak
First COVID, then mysterious hepatitis cases among children, now monkeypox – a rare viral illness being detected i ...
Loading Comments...