The CDC is asking Americans to have a quiet Christmas this year.
As coronavirus infection rates continue to skyrocket across the country, The Center for Disease Control is updating its guidelines for holiday gatherings. And the agency wants some big changes to take place this year to avoid spreading the virus any further.
Among several suggestions, the CDC is asking families to avoid singing, loud music or speaking loudly during holiday festivities.
The reason is speaking loudly and singing increases the chances of someone passing saliva and respiratory droplets to someone else. Loud music compounds the problem because it forces people to speak louder, the CDC said.
Beyond that, the agency also wants families to put away the wine.
“Using alcohol or drugs that may alter judgment and make it more difficult to practice COVID-19 safety measures,” the CDC says in its new guidelines.
You can read all of the suggested changes here.
Instead, the CDC recommends families have a virtual celebration this year. Traveling increases a person’s risk of spreading coronavirus.
At the very least, the agency suggests families should hold festivities outdoors, social distance, wear masks when not eating or drinking, wash hands frequently and thoroughly, and quarantine if possible for 14 days after traveling.
CDC Hopes to Stop Spread of COVID-19 As Infections Soar
According to Johns Hopkins University, nearly 250,000 Americans have died since the pandemic began. More than 11 million have been infected. And those numbers are only increasing. Currently, every state in the country is seeing a rise in coronavirus infections, NBC reported. A dozen states have seen the numbers more than double in the past week.
Hospitals have reached capacity and social services are overwhelmed.
Because of that, politicians are considering crack downs.
For example, Chicago mayor Lori Lightfoot last week asked residents to cancel Thanksgiving plans and stay at home.
“This is serious life and death,” Lightfoot said at a press conference last week, according to CNBC. “We are sounding the alarm that we are at this inflection point where we have to do more than we’ve already done.”
New York and New Jersey have also asked families to consider not traveling on Thanksgiving. Other states have made similar requests, though no state has banned holiday travel as of now.