This Is How to Put on a Face Mask Correctly
The Covid-19 Pandemic is still raging. With no vaccine or treatment or readily available to the public, preventing the spread of the coronavirus is imperative. The virus spreads from person to person, so it’s important to protect yourself and others.
The best way to protect yourself and others is by staying home when possible. For those who must go out, staying at least six feet apart and wearing a face mask will offer protection from contracting the virus. A facemask must be worn correctly, however.
If you’ve ever wondered how to put on a face mask correctly, this guide will help ensure you’re safely wearing a covering that will protect you and the people around you.
Why Wear a Face Mask?
The simple answer is that wearing a mask slows the spread of the coronavirus. When someone has the coronavirus, whether they show symptoms or not, they’re still able to spread the coronavirus through droplets from the nose or mouth.
These droplets can spread through speaking, coughing, or sneezing. This is why it’s essential to wear a face mask. It keeps the droplets from transferring from person to person during common, everyday tasks.
When wearing a face mask, if there were any droplets that would come out of your mouth, the cloth covering will catch it. This prevents the droplets from traveling to people around you or being in the air.
Similarly, wearing a face mask can protect you from the droplets if someone wasn’t wearing a mask or if there are droplets in the air. A face mask not only stops droplets from traveling but stops the droplets from entering your body.
The CDC recommends wearing some kind of cloth face covering in public while also practicing social distancing. Many state governments require people to wear a face mask in public places, including offices, salons, restaurants, grocery, and retail stores.
The Kinds of Face Masks
Now that face masks are the best public protection in the pandemic and are required by most places; it’s important to know the difference between the different types. Each type of face mask has different levels of effectiveness in protection against the virus.
Here is the breakdown of the types of face coverings.
Using a bandana does provide some protection against droplets that come from a cough or sneeze. A bandana isn’t the best at stopping the spread. Wearing a bandana decreases the amount of droplet spray from 8 feet to 4 feet.
Cloth masks are the most common type now. Made from cotton fabric or sometimes old t-shirts, cloth masks are one of the more comfortable options for most people. However, their effectiveness relies heavily on how well they’re made.
A single layer mask only filters about 1%, while a two-layer provides 35% of filtration. Densely woven cotton fabrics are best, and the more layers of fabric, the more protection the mask provides. These masks decrease spray from 8 feet to 2½ inches.
Cloth Masks with a Filter
This is a step up from the cloth mask as the filter provides an extra layer of protection. Most cloth masks come with a pocket that you can insert a filter into. The best filter is one made of polypropylene fabric.
You can also use facial tissues as a filter in a pinch as long as you change the tissue filter daily.
Disposable Surgical Masks
These masks are great for one-time use. Surgical masks filter out 60% of inhaled particles. They do well in preventing the spray from droplets, sneezes, and coughing.
N95 Masks and Other Respirators
These offer the most protection against the coronavirus because they filter out 95% of breathed-in particles.
An N95 face mask or other similar respirators are the best at keeping out the virus by not letting droplets or particles in. The other types of masks do best at keeping the virus from spreading by keeping in droplets.
How to Put on a Face Mask and Remove One Safely
It’s also important to wear a face mask correctly and remove it safely. This is just as important to preventing the spread of the coronavirus.
Before you put on your face mask, you should wash your hands. This prevents any germs from getting under your mask. Place the covering flat over your nose and mouth. Secure the straps behind your ears.
It’s important that the mask fits snugly with no gaps, but not tightly across your face. Be sure that you can breathe easily. To get the maximum protection, your mask should stay over your nose and mouth while you’re wearing it.
To remove the mask, undo the straps behind your ears. Handle the mask by only the ear loops before folding the outside corners together. Wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer after handling the mask.
If the mask is cloth, place in the washing the machine to clean. If the mask is disposable, throw it away carefully.
Stopping the Spread Starts With You
While the future after the coronavirus pandemic is uncertain, there are some facts we know. Mitigating the spread is the responsibility of everyone since this is a public health crisis. If you’re in public, a face mask is your best defense against the coronavirus.
Knowing how to put on a face mask correctly can save the lives of you and the people around you. Ending the pandemic is a group effort and everyone properly fighting against it is the best way to ensure public health and safety.