There’s a lot we still don’t know about the coronavirus. This has, of course, led to a lot of different information, especially with masks- although there is an increasing amount of data proving their efficacy against airborne viruses such as COVID-19. Don’t wear a mask; wear a mask. As of now, the CDC is recommending that people wear masks when out, especially in places where you can’t socially distance. Some cities are even requiring all adults to wear masks in public. Still, you shouldn’t be using masks that the medical community needs. You can make your own by following our guide here. Here are some benefits of wearing a mask:
Preventing the spread to others: It’s still not known how many people are carrying this virus while either asymptomatic or presymptomatic and how much it can spread in these stages. Because we don’t know enough about this, people need to wear masks that can prevent the spread of droplets into the air and infect other people. Citing new data that a “significant portion” of people infected with the novel coronavirus can spread the virus to others even when they don’t have symptoms, the CDC revised its recommendation, saying that people should wear cloth face coverings “whenever people must go into public settings.” It’s especially important to wear in any place where social distancing isn’t possible and to help protect essential workers while shopping. Wearing a mask will reduce 95% of the droplets that can be carried 6 feet in the air. It is important to note that it is most effective when the infected person (asymptomatic or symptomatic) is wearing the mask!
Protecting yourself: Again, we don’t know how many people we encounter daily who have the virus, so wearing a mask can protect us, too. Unless it’s an N95 mask, it’s not guaranteed to protect you from the virus, but it still gives you some level of protection. Austria saw its daily infections plummet by 90% after making them compulsory! Several studies concluded that masks, in general, offer more protection than no mask at all. USA Today cited a study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, which revealed that “liquid droplets from sneezes, coughs and just exhaling can travel more than 26 feet and linger in the air for minutes.”
Psychological benefit: Even though it’s not guaranteed to protect you from getting the virus, there can be some psychological benefit that comes from the feeling of protection. This can help with people’s anxiety. Another bonus- just the act of seeing masks are a great visual reminder to keep your physical distance.
Masks stop you from touching your face: One average, we touch our faces around 52 times every day, and every time we can carry infectious agents from whatever we just touched to the region around our mouth and nose. From there, viruses and bacteria can enter our mucous membranes and cause the transmission disease. Face masks stop you from touching your face- and as a rule of thumb, wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds when you remove the mask at home.