Full Guide to Wearing Face Masks

The New York Times and Washington Post have now come round to a position I advocated for here on Medium last week: We should all be wearing masks. Not just health care workers, but ALL of us. Every time we go out in public.


Because they work.

Analysis from the SARS outbreak in 2003 shows that washing arms 10+ instances day by day was 55% efficient in stopping virus transmission; wearing a mask was actually more efficient, reducing transmission by about 68%.

Combining a number of types of protection — hand washing, mask wearing, gloves, and another layer of outerwear (gowning) — was ninety one% effective.

Read that once more: ninety one% efficient at stopping virus transmission.

COVID-19 and SARS are comparable types of viruses (coronaviruses), and it is smart that what works to cease transmission for one will work to cease transmission of the other.

Masks work, first, because they are a physical barrier to no matter’s using alongside on that air you’re breathing or moving through. Right here’s a chart showing the relative barrier effectiveness for numerous materials:

Secondly, they work because they maintain you from touching your face all day long. The masks makes you more self-aware of the fact that you’re not supposed to the touch your face- specifically, your mouth, nose, and eyes, and the areas round them- and in case you unintentionally do, you’ll contact the masks, not your skin directly.

Third, the expertise of other countries who masks show that masks work in the real world. In the words of Jeremy Howard, researcher and Masks4All activist, explaining a chart in his latest Youtube video showing how some countries have successfully «flattened the curve» on new infections: «When you have a look at all of the countries which have flat curves, they’re countries where mask-wearing is extremely normal, and NOT wearing a masks in places like public transport can be considered anti-social.» He notes that the Czech Republic went from zero mask usage to 100% in 10 days, and in the process they halted the growth of new covid-19 cases. The Czechs made their own masks- the federal government didn’t give them out.

For those who nonetheless have to be persuaded, check out this Chinese research of a neighborhood outbreak case on January 22 through the peak Lunar New Year travel season. A sick individual on the bus who did not work together with anybody spread the virus to 7 others, a few of whom have been seated much more than 6 ft away. Two new passengers caught the virus half-hour after the unique sick person had left the bus. NONE OF THE PEOPLE WEARING MASKS WERE INFECTED. Read the article, it’s very detailed, with a schematic of precisely where folks had been sitting on the bus.

So let’s say you’re convinced, and now you’re thinking of some type of face covering. What are your options?

First, please don’t buy masks commercially, if by some miracle you would find them now. Commercially made PPE must be reserved for medical personnel at this time. Unfortunately, the scarcity of commercially made PPE, and the shortage of foresight that caused us to be in such a place of shortage, is probably why we initially received this messaging of «Masks don’t work!» They do, of us just didn’t need you to understand it for a while, to avoid a run on masks. Think of the empty shelves in supermarkets throughout America the place bathroom paper used to live, and you perceive why.

The best thing you are able to do to mask NOW are to make use of materials around the house. Get inventive; anything that covers the mouth and nose and stays in place will work.

While it’s finest if the masks fits well and there are not any gaps between your face and the outside air, don’t hand over on your homemade mask in the event you can’t achieve that. Any face covering will maintain you from touching the skin around your nostril and mouth directly, which could turn out to be the most important mechanism by which masks block virus transmission. If you inadvertently touch your face while you’re wearing a masks, you’ll just contact the masks, not your skin.

You’ll be able to attempt to shape your face covering using pipe cleaners or opened-up rubber-coated paper clips in the half that goes over your nose to make a tighter fit — experiment. An important thing is that you simply wash your arms, put in your face covering, and exit of the house protected.

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Sobre el Autor: coleblanco0