Face Masks: Slow the Spread Of COVID-19
Although there has been controversy on whether masks help to stop the spread of COVID-19, there’s scientific evidence that supports the effectiveness of face masks.
In fact, both the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization highly recommend wearing a face mask to protect others and yourself from COVID.
In this article, we will elaborate on what considerations to follow when it comes to selecting, wearing, and cleaning your mask.
When Is It Necessary to Wear a Mask?
Because it takes from 5 to 14 days for infected people to showCOVID-19 symptoms, it is recommended for the general public to wear a mask in the following circumstances:
- When going out to public settings
- In gatherings where you are among people who don’t live in your household
- At places where it is not possible to practice social distancing (staying 6 feet away from other people).
Who Should Wear a Mask?
According to the CDC guidelines, people who should wear a mask are the following:
- General Public. The use of masks is recommended for people of 2 years of age or older and for people who do not have a disability that makes it unsafe for them to wear a mask.
- People who may or do have COVID-19. To prevent the spread, people who were exposed to someone with COVID or are sick should wear a mask, including asymptomatic patients, since they can also transmit the virus.
- Caregivers and Health Care Professionals. For their safety and others, health care professionals should wear PPE.
How to Select a Mask
Unfortunately, many people have taken advantage of the opportunity to profit from COVID by selling inadequate PPE.
For face masks to effectively protect you against COVID, they must meet the following criteria:
- Must have two or more layers of fabric.
- The fabric must be washable and breathable.
- The mask must completely cover your nose and mouth.
- It must fit your face appropriately: comfortable to wear and fits without leaving gaps.
- Must NOT have exhalation valves (that allows virus particles to either enter or escape).
- Must NOT be a medical face mask — such as N95 or surgical masks. These are valuable resources that should only be worn by healthcare providers.
How to Wear a Mask
According to the CDC guidelines, here are some recommendations onhow to wear a face mask for maximum protection:
- Always wash your hands or apply hand sanitizer before putting your face mask on.
- Make sure the mask fits comfortably.
- Make sure the mask remains in place. The mask must NOT uncover your nose or mouth as you speak or move around.
- Avoid touching your mask while wearing it. If necessary, wash your hands before doing so.
- Avoid putting your mask on your neck, forehead, chin, or arms. Also, avoid leaving it dangling on your ear.
- Always wash your hands after removing your mask.
How to Clean Your Mask
Reusable face masks should be cleaned regularly. Here are some tips on how to do it:
- You can wash your mask along with your regular laundry.
- If possible, use warm water, depending on the type of laundry load you are washing.
- Sun-dry the mask or use the highest temperature to dry it in the dryer.
If you have further questions about how to prevent gettingCOVID-19, or one of your loved ones is sick, please contact BASS Urgent Care. You can get immediate assistance from a healthcare provider by calling us at (925) 329–3718. We are here to help.