How and When to use Masks

Oct 11 , 2021

How and When to use Masks

How and When to use Masks

The 2019 coronavirus pandemic (COVID19) is currently viewed as one of the world's greatest threats, not only to public health and well-being, but also to global economic and social stability. It has taken the lives of our loved ones and has also educated us about the importance of cleanliness of surroundings around us. Covid prevention is largely dependent upon the precautions such as social distancing, washing of our hands regularly and most importantly wearing of masks. Wearing of face masks is one of the most visually noticeable prevention measures which have been initiated. Masks are an important means of suppressing transmission and saving lives. Along with social distancing, avoiding crowded places, covering our sneezes and coughs and other precautions, masks make it a 100% effort to suppress transmission of the virus.

Masks nowadays have become an integral part of our day to day life. The best benefit for people with COVID19 is to protect them from transmitting COVID19 to other people. Masks can be more effective as "source control" because they can prevent larger ejected droplets from evaporating into smaller droplets that can travel further. But there are still many misconceptions regarding how and when to use masks. So let's have a brief look regarding usage of masks:

Firstly,

Who should wear what type of mask:

Medical masks

Medical masks such as N95 are recommended for healthcare professionals and people who have transmitted the virus or are showing symptoms. People over 60 or with chronic respiratory illnesses should also wear N965 masks. 

Fabric masks

Non-medical, fabric masks can be used by people under the age of 60 who do not have any symptoms and no medical history.

Secondly, 

When to wear masks:

In areas where the virus is circulating, masks should be worn in crowded environments, where one cannot be at least 1 meter from others, and in rooms with poor or unknown ventilation. It is not always easy to determine the quality of ventilation, which depends on the speed of air exchange, recirculation and fresh outside air. So, when in doubt, it is safer to just wear a mask. 

You should always wash your hands before and after using a mask and before touching it while wearing it. 

When wearing a mask, you should always keep your physical distance from others as much as possible. Wearing a mask does not mean that you can have close contact with people. 

For indoor public environments such as busy shopping malls, religious buildings, restaurants, schools, and public transportation, you should wear a mask if you cannot keep your physical distance from others. 

If someone except your family member visits your home, wear a mask if physical distance is not possible or if ventilation is poor. 

When going out, wear a mask if you cannot keep your physical distance from others. Some examples are crowded markets, busy streets and bus stops.

In the case of an infected person, masks become a compulsion as it prevents the virus from transmitting to other people.

Lastly, 

How to use masks:


● Putting on a Mask:

  1. Wash your hands with an alcohol-based sanitizer or soap and water before touching your mask.
  2. Inspect the mask for tears or holes, do not use a damaged mask. 
  3. Adjust the mask to cover the mouth, nose and chin, leaving no space on the sides. 
  4. Place the straps behind the head or the ears. Do not cross the straps as this can cause gaps on the side of the face. 
  5. Avoid touching the mask while wearing it. 
  6. Change your mask if it is dirty or wet.
  7. Make sure you have your own mask and don't share it with others. 
  8. Resist the temptation to pull the mask up to your chin or remove it when talking to other people.
  9. Choose a mask that completely covers your nose and mouth and fits against the sides of your face and doesn't have gaps.

 

 

 

● Taking off a Mask:

  1. Wash your hands before removing the mask.

  2. Remove the mask by removing it from the ear cups, without touching the front of the mask.
  3. If your fabric mask is not dirty or wet and you plan to use it again, store it in a clean, resealable plastic bag. If you need to reuse it, keep the mask by the elastic rings when you remove it from the bag. Clean your mask once a day.
  4. Wash your hands after removing the mask.
     

    Wash your mask once a day if it is a fabric one and if you use disposable mask then use and throw it in a recycle bin.