How well do face masks protect against coronavirus?
There is no need to explain the pandemic that we all are going through because we started to live with the restrictions and safety measures to protect ourselves from the virus.
But still, some of us have doubts about how wearing masks can protect us from the coronavirus.
Well, if you are someone who has that doubt, this is for you.
Yes, wearing face masks combined with some preventive measures like washing hands frequently with soap and water, maintaining social distancing can slow down the spread of coronavirus.
Based on an experiment to test the ability of the mask to block the respiratory droplets using a high-speed video. It has become obvious that the hundreds of droplets (ranging from 20-500 micrometres) generated while saying a simple phrase has been blocked when the mouth was covered by a damp cloth.
Still not convinced about the experiment results, let’s take a look at the real-life cases of the effectiveness of wearing a mask.
Case1 - A man flew from China to Toronto who has been tested positive for COVID-19. But he wore a mask the whole time during the flight journey, and the 25 people closest to him on the flight have been tested negative.
Case2 - The 140 clients of two hairstylists in Missouri had avoided the chance of getting affected by the virus from the hairstylists by wearing masks. Yes, even though the hairstylists got affected by COVID-19, none of their clients had been tested positive for the virus.
Hope, these real-life cases are convincing enough for you to wear masks. The following are types of masks that are used and highly recommended.
Types of Mask:
These are loose-fitting masks that protect the person who wears them from the droplets or sprays that may contain germs. These are also called surgical masks, which are most commonly used by doctors during surgical procedures. This mask filters the large particles when the wearer breathes in.
N95 is a type of respirator that gives the wearer extra protection by filtering out both large and small particles while breathing.
N95 masks are mostly used by the healthcare workers who are staying closer in contact with the covid affected people, and like the surgical masks, these N95 masks also need to be disposed of properly.
A cloth mask with many layers of tightly woven fabric like cotton prevents the droplets while the wearer talks, sneezes, or coughs. It also acts as a barrier by restricting the entry droplets while breathing in.
Things to remember about wearing a mask;
- It is necessary to wash or sanitize your hands before putting on and after taking off your mask.
- Check and ensure that the mask covers your mouth, nose, and chin.
- If it’s a fabric mask, wash it. If it’s a medical mask, throw it in the trash bin at the end of the day.
- Sanitize your hands after touching your masks (it is better to avoid this).
- Remove the masks by using the ear loops instead of touching the front side of the mask.
- Don’t use masks with valves.
- Don’t use face shields without wearing a mask.
- Go for the one which wraps around the sides of the face and below the chin, if you have to use a face shield only.
- Don’t put masks on children who are below the age of two.
- Don’t put a mask on someone who has difficulty breathing or someone who can’t remove the mask by themselves.