The novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak is the greatest pandemic over the globe these days. It is a human killer disease which has caused vast loss to human life, infecting millions and causing thousands of deaths. This virus is spreading very quickly and is causing great danger to life as well as the world’s economy. Health specialists are struggling hard to control its spread and to cure the infected peoples. Besides the health department, engineering and architectural departments are also showing keen involvement in the fight against Coronavirus. In this regard, Interior Designers are trying their best to control the speed of the virus by implementing changes in their designs to ensure the health and safety of the people. In this article, we will discuss how Interior Designers are responding to COVID-19 Outbreak and the Interior Design materials used in Coronavirus conditions.
Interior Designers have shifted to using plastics and easily washable or disposable materials in their designs to help avoid disease transmission. Their primary focus is on designing homes that are easier to clean and disinfect. For this purpose, they have switched to using copper, brass, and woods in place of iron, and woolen materials such as carpets in the homes. The vision behind making changes in the materials used in Interior Designing is to make our homes safer and protective in situations such as the COVID-19 Outbreak.
Interior Designers have found that some materials are more effective against viruses such as Coronavirus than the others. The recent research report by Institutes of Health, UCLA, CDC, and Princeton University scientists shows the behavior of Coronavirus, officially called SARS-CoV-2 and explains how long it remains active on various materials. It proves that the virus remains viable in atomizers for at least three hours or the time consumed during the experiment. The Coronavirus is more active on smooth surfaces such as plastics for up to 72 hours and stainless steel for up to 48 hours. It is found that the virus suffers for a comparatively shorter period of time on surfaces such as paper, cardboard, or clothing, i.e.; for up to 24 hours. The strongest material against Coronavirus is proved to be the copper with only four hours survival of the virus on its surface.
Following the research report, the Interior Designers have started using the following materials to design safe and healthy homes for controlling the spread and transmission of the virus among the people through surface contact. These materials are:
Interior Designers have borough copper back in their designs because of their antimicrobial properties. It is observed that bacteria such as E.coli and viruses such as influenza or even the novel Coronavirus can survive for up to four to five days on various hand surfaces, but surprisingly, when they land on surfaces made up of copper or its alloys such as brass, they become weak or usually die within a couple of minutes. Hence, Copper is considered to be the strongest antimicrobial material that can degrade viruses and bacteria more quickly than any other material.
Door hardware, locksets, and even push plates on doors should be made up of brass, especially in buildings and public places. In 2015, the experts researching on Defense Department compared the infection rates at three hospitals and reported that the infection rates were reduced by 58% when the copper alloys utilized in the hospitals. Similar research was made in the year 2016 inside the pediatric care unit, which also graphed an extensive decrease in the infection rate.
Brass and Copper
Floors should be comfortably washable and should not provide bugs or insects a place to hide. These insects can carry diseases and can contaminate your house. Therefore, putting carpets on floors or even a single rug in the living rooms should be avoided to protect your home and ensure your health and safety in the days of Outbreaks such as the coronavirus pandemic. Hence, Vinyl flooring is making a rebound and is now re-branded as Luxury Vinyl Tile (LVT). Interior Designers and even the greatest flooring companies are now preferring Vinyl flooring instead of carpeting.
In addition to vinyl, linoleum, which is entirely made from natural materials and has a natural microbe-killing characteristic and is most probable to kill microbes such as SARS and other Coronavirus. The use of Marmoleum (the most antimicrobial and well-known brand of linoleum) for house flooring ensures 100% microbe killing, therefore, reduces the risk of virus spread.
Concrete and Terrazzo Flooring
Concrete and terrazzo flooring had been most popular before, but was somehow, vanished from modern Interior Design trends. Carpeting was becoming one of the leading floor design styles these days, but Interior Designers have now come to realize that carpet flooring can cause the spread of viruses in situations such as Coronavirus. Therefore, concrete flooring with epoxy paints on it or terrazzo flooring is now preferred by most of the Interior Designers as it is easy to clean and could reduce the threat of virus spread.
Drywall is an absurd material. The paper facing is only the food for molds and deteriorates when exposed to water. Hence could be a perfect place for microbes and is unhygienic for health. In place of paper facing, fiber facing can be used which is more reliable, dampness and mold-free. It can take the maltreatment if you need to wash it down to clean and disinfect it.
Plastered walls are now introduced in the home design trends as it is comparatively easier to clean and disinfect them. Clay-based plaster is now considered to be the best wall designing material as it is more reliable and durable. Plastered walls are more likely to improve sound timber and prevent infection. It has a fascinating smooth look which makes it more appealing and does not spoil the charm of the design.
By summing up this article, I have discussed how Interior Designers are responding to the novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Outbreak to ensure healthy living and microbes free surrounding for the people. The researchers and scientists have revealed and suggested many antimicrobial materials that should be included in the modern Interior Design trends to ensure safe and disinfected homes. The above mentioned are a few disinfectant materials against viruses. The scientists are still in search of other, more strong antimicrobial materials for use in Interior Designing to reduce the risk of virus transmission. The basic concept behind the use of these materials is that everything in the surrounding should be washable and easy to clean and sanitize in order to control the spread of the Coronavirus.