Even after passing half the year, it seems like the coronavirus pandemic is still a risk for public health. Earlier this year, there was less information available on the virus which resulted in the massive spread, high infection rate and so many deaths caused by the virus. But now, there is much information available for the health experts to suggest that this virus could be easily prevented by using personal protective gear i.e. face masks and the following distancing. This explanation is not supported by the Anti-mask movement supporters suggesting they aren’t clear about why wearing a face mask is necessary. Dr. Amy Tan, a physician from Calgary, Canada has tried to explain the significance of face masks in controlling the COVID-19 spread in a recent interview.
The first thing that could confuse people supporting the anti-mask movement is that why is wearing a mask necessary every time. There is plenty of evidence that suggests nearly 80% of the coronavirus cases are preventable if everyone is using protective gear and the virus is not spread. Not many people know but wearing a mask not only saves people to receive coronavirus but also restricts a coronavirus patient to disperse it and infect others.
The coronavirus spreads through droplets coming from sneeze, cough, laugh, or even through talking. So whenever two people are talking or are in close proximity without wearing a face mask, it means they are highly susceptible to receive and transmit the virus.
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It is not necessary for all coronavirus patients to exhibit its symptoms, many of them go unnoticed. The U.S Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has confirmed asymptomatic cases of coronavirus which could confuse people that they are not infected. The truth is there is no way to tell if a person is infected or not, without going through the coronavirus diagnostic test. So, it’s better for everyone’s safety that all people use masks, whether or not they experience typical coronavirus symptoms.
While choosing a mask, find the one which is made with natural fibers. These types of masks are highly breathable. On the other side, a tight weave cotton mask is also a good choice, and having more than one layer ensures more safety. However, whichever mask a person, has to be user-friendly especially in terms of breathability.
One major part of using a face mask that people ignore is the cleaning and discarding the mask. Most of the masks used by people during this on-going pandemic are of disposable nature. However, people tend to use them repeatedly, without relapsing that they are not serving their purpose after one time of use.
Other, cotton masks are washable and the medical experts suggest washing or cleaning these masks every time before using them. Reusable masks are easy and handy but they are not environment friendly and may increase in waste. So, it is better to look for more durable and re-usable cotton masks that can be washed and used again and again.
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Contrary to popular belief, it is not necessary to wear a face shield along with a face mask. The face shield is just an additional protective gear that is recommended for people working with direct contact with coronavirus patients i.e. hospital staff. For all others, wearing a face mask is enough.
Instead of supporting the anti-mask movement, it is better to contact a healthcare expert or avail the free coronavirus awareness line launched by your local government body or healthcare system and find answers. Face masks are to save people; they have no hidden agenda or attack on anyone’s fundamental right. It is high time that every person realizes the significance of these precautionary measures and take part to beat this coronavirus pandemic for once and all.