Can you get COVID-19 by sharing a drink?

Infection and Spread Staying Safe

A: Yes. For sure.

You can get COVID-19 by sharing a drinking glass–even if the glass contains an adult beverage.

The virus that causes COVID-19 is present in saliva, and although it isn’t the most common transmission route, it can be transmitted orally. The concentration of alcohol in a drink is not high enough to protect you from infection. Back in 2020, there was a well-documented small outbreak of COVID-19 cases in a group of young adults where eleven people got sick after sharing an adult beverage from the same cup at a party (why? It doesn’t say.) The four people in attendance who did not share the communal cup did not fall ill.

So if you’re sharing a drink with someone else (say outdoors, where the chances of breathing in someone else’s exhales is pretty low) you could get COVID-19 from the cup itself. So go ahead and ask for an extra glass to split that drink!

A related tip, you should isolate your toothbrush if you have COVID-19 and you’re trying to keep the rest of your family from being exposed. Store it separately, not in a shared cup or toothbrush holder. And it’s always good practice to change your toothbrush after you’ve begun to recover from any viral infection.

Thanks to Dorothy for this question! We can’t believe we haven’t answered this one already!

Additional Links:

Sharing Alcoholic Drinks and a COVID-19 Outbreak

Here’s Why You MUST Change Your Toothbrush After Recovering from COVID-19

Caring for Someone Sick at Home

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