Why sneaking out to go hook-up during lockdown is a bad idea

Illustration. Image via Getty
Illustration. Image via Getty

So your S.O. doesn’t live with you. Or maybe you’ve been spending your lockdown isolation doing a serious deep-dive into Tinder. Whatever the case, your thirst tweets are loud. So is it okay to sneak out for a bit of action?

The short answer: no. We hate to be the ones to press pause on our sexcapades, but a hook-up is not a good idea right now. 

READ MORE: Love at first flight - How a drone and a bubble secured a date for this couple during quarantine  

The science of lockdown

As with the common cold or flu, COVID-19 spreads through droplets from an infected host to a healthy one. These droplets could come from your mouth or nose. Hand-to-hand transmission is also possible, since your dirty paws go from various surfaces to eyes, mouth and everywhere else at an alarming rate. So far, so simple: stay away from sick people. And if you suspect you’re infected, self-isolate and seek proper treatment — home remedies won’t cut it. Here’s the catch: some people with the virus have presented no symptoms

Famous cases include Idris Elba and Kevin Durant. Hence, lockdown. The idea is to keep people away from each other so asymptomatic people don’t spread the disease without even knowing they have it. 

21 Days of abstinence?

This leads us back to your conundrum: Could your prospective Quarantine and Chill turn into ‘Rona And Regret? Sadly, research has been pretty thin on the ground when it comes to sex and coco-ro. 

READ MORE: No alcohol for 21 days? Your skin might thank you later 

There’s no evidence — at the time of publishing — showing that the virus explicitly spreads from sexual acts. We know that when we do leave the house during lockdown (groceries, medical supplies, collecting social grants), we’re meant to practise “social distancing”, that is staying one metre away from other people. 

And we know kissing someone sick is out of the picture, since saliva qualifies as bodily fluids. 

Getting down on lockdown

The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organisation (WHO) have not issued advisories around casual sex, aside from advising the reduction of any non-essential contact with other people. But according to a newly-issued memo by the New York Department of Health, sex is off the table, unless you live with your S.O. and even then they advise caution around certain acts, including kissing.  

So what’s a girl to do with all these new matches? For a start, you could… start a conversation. Dating app Hinge, is prioritising virtual dates on their social media platforms, and several health experts have advised people to take the chance to get to know their prospective love interests virtually rather than physically while we’re in lockdown.

READ MORE: Sexting has evolved beyond the eggplant emoji, will you be using this form of intimacy during lockdown?

If that’s really not your bag, there’s always the wonders of your now-immaculate hand. “You are your safest sex partner,” the memo reads. “Masturbation will not spread COVID-19, especially if you wash your hands (and any sex toys) with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before and after.” 

What's your lockdown love story? Share it with us here.

This article was originally published in Women's Health SA 

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