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What is a Privacy Curtain?

Malcolm Tatum
Updated May 23, 2024
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Privacy curtains are simple devices that may be easily employed to provide a measure of visual and in some cases audio privacy on a temporary basis. The concept of the privacy curtain is often a practical one, but the device can sometimes also be used for aesthetic purposes as well. There are a number of applications of the privacy curtain in both public and private settings.

Perhaps the most familiar type of privacy curtain today is found in hospitals and other types of medical care facilities. Composed of a system that includes overhead curtain tracks and long flowing sections of material, a medical privacy curtain can be drawn around the bed of a patient, providing him or her with privacy while being examined by a doctor or nurse. The curtain may also allow persons who are sharing a hospital room to enjoy some degree of separation in the small space, helping to make the space feel more personal and secure.

Along with use in hospitals, privacy curtains are sometimes employed with voting machines or booths, As the individual steps into the booth, he or she can activate an automatic closing of the curtains to ensure visual privacy while casting votes. The curtains work on a curtain track that will allow the voter or an attendant to open and close the curtains at will, usually with a simple flick of a switch or touch of a button.

Cubicle curtains are sometimes employed in convention halls as a way of defining the space set aside for each exhibit. When this is the application, the setup will normally involve a tall curtain along the back side of the space, combined with two curtains that section off the space on each side. The remaining fourth side is left open for persons to enter and view the contents of the exhibit.

Along with use at trade shows and exhibitions, the cubicle curtain is also making an impression in living spaces as well. As more non-traditional spaces, such as warehouses and office buildings are being converted into use as residences, the use of a privacy curtain to define functions within the space can be used instead of adding interior walls. Supported with a simple rod, privacy curtains can separate the bedroom area from the living area without incurring a great deal of cost. As a bonus, it is often much less expensive and time consuming to change out the privacy curtain than to repaint the space.

Some forms of the privacy curtain are treated today to inhibit sound as well as provide visual privacy. These types of curtains are sometimes used in offices as a means of muffling the normal noise associated with doing business within a small space. They may also be desirable for home use, helping to somewhat muffle the sounds of the television from reaching into the space set aside for the bedroom.

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Malcolm Tatum
By Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum, a former teleconferencing industry professional, followed his passion for trivia, research, and writing to become a full-time freelance writer. He has contributed articles to a variety of print and online publications, including InfoBloom, and his work has also been featured in poetry collections, devotional anthologies, and newspapers. When not writing, Malcolm enjoys collecting vinyl records, following minor league baseball, and cycling.
Discussion Comments
By LisaLou — On Jul 06, 2011

We have a small patio area in our back yard, but also have very close neighbors. I enjoy sitting outside on nice evenings, but many times wanted to have more privacy, so we bought a patio privacy curtain.

This curtain is retractable and there were several different colors to choose from. It is nice having it retractable, so you use it only when you want to. I wondered how much I would really use it once I got it set up, and found that I use it even more than I thought I would.

By andee — On Jul 06, 2011

One of our favorite places to spend nice weekends in the summer is on the lake. Sometimes we can have quite a few people with us, and the pontoon privacy curtain on our boat is a real lifesaver.

It is perfect for someone wanting to make a quick change. There is not much privacy on a boat like that, so being able to create a small private space for something like that is very helpful.

By myharley — On Jul 05, 2011

The privacy curtains tracks are very convenient for office and business settings. They are not as private as it would be to have your own room, but it is nice to have the option to add some quick privacy if you need to.

We offer many different training classes at our company, and depending on the size of the class we can use these curtains to make more or less space.

Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum
Malcolm Tatum, a former teleconferencing industry professional, followed his passion for trivia, research, and writing...
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