The U.S. government recommends that all people wear masks to stop the spread of the coronavirus in the country. “Voice of America” has collected recommendations and official information from the American physicians, to answer frequently asked questions about wearing masks.
Protects the mask from being infected with coronavirus?
The mask protects those around you from infection. According to the Centers for control and prevention of diseases of the United States, a significant portion of coronavirus-infected people exhibit no symptoms and not know that they are carriers of the virus. These people can infect others unwittingly. Therefore, to wear a mask every time when you leave the house, it is a good idea.
If you are a healthy person and are among patients, medical face mask can reduce your chances of infection. However, it does not guarantee complete protection.
“It will not protect you, but it will protect your neighbor, says Public radio Dr. Daniel Griffin, an expert on infectious diseases at Columbia University. And if your neighbor wears a mask, same thing happens, it protects you from infection. So, if you wear a mask correctly, it is very useful for the people.”
The main function of protective masks — you can protect other people from infection. The best protective masks dust masks N95, they are recommended to wear physicians in contact with patients.
If someone sneezed on me, will protect me wearing a mask?
Yes. If you wear the right mask and after sneezing do NOT touch it with your hands.
If you’re wearing a mask, droplets from cough or sneeze of another person are deposited on the mask and not on your face. However, it is very important then remove the mask touching only the rope behind the ears without touching the mask.
“This is what I see, says Dr. Griffin — people don’t use the masks correctly, they touch the front of the mask, adjust it, get down into the nose.”
If you touch the front of the mask, all that came to her after someone’s cough or sneeze, it goes on your hands.
The video shows how to remove the mask, if there is a suspicion that she is infected.
Doctors also recommend wearing glasses or regular sunglasses. They protect your eyes from the droplets after coughing or sneezing.
In social networks doctors and nurses actively spreading different videos which show how to correctly remove the mask and gloves.
How effective are the masks made at home?
There is no consensus regarding the effects of homemade masks.
Home made masks out of fabric, most likely will not be able to protect you from virus infection COVID-19, said Michael Doyle, a military doctor of the American army in new York.
“The only mask that the Centers for control and prevention of diseases considered safe from infection by coronavirus, the only way not to inhale the virus is an N95 mask,” — said captain Michael Doyle edition of USA Today.
Chief surgeon of the USA presented a video about how you can make your own face mask.
Meanwhile, a separate study in the United States and Vietnam have shown that improvised mask can still be effective and can block respiratory droplets that fall from the sick people. How strong this protection is unknown.
How often to wash reusable mask?
“Mask, like underwear, should be washed after each use,” said Dr. Griffin.
“It is impossible to remove the mask, put in the bag and then back onto the face. If you put on her, or she holds your cough, sneezing or drops during conversations, or protect you from sneezing, coughing and droplets during other people’s conversations. So in any case it is dirty. It is necessary, or wash or throw it away”.
If you use a mask of cloth, after each use, put it in the Laundry basket.
Cannot be put off the mask for lunch, and then wear it again. It will give you all the dirt that was on your hands, on the table, and other surfaces that touched the mask.
Is there a best mask design?
There is little information about what kind of fabric is effective for the mask and how many layers of cloth required.
Dr. Griffin recommends close weave cotton: “don’t use synthetics or polyester, because when we studied the ability of the virus to survive on various surfaces, it was discovered that spandex is the worst surface”.
The Johns Hopkins University in the US recommends own design masks — on this link.
Hospital network Kaiser Permanente offers its own design in here.
Layout own casual shared and Ukrainian volunteers from the organization Veteranius that the funds collected sew masks for Ukrainian soldiers.
All organizations are recommended to wear masks and use 100% cotton and recommended to wash the fabric before sewing, to the fabric of the mask then “the village”.
This video shows you how you can make a mask out of a shirt without sewing, just using scissors.
Can a scarf to replace the mask?
Likely not. Most scarves do not have a close weave, and they are loose to face.
“Imagine that you protect the face and knit scarf with many holes. It’s ineffective,” says Dr. Michael Klompas, medical infectious diseases.
The purpose of the mask to create a barrier which protects your face from the droplets with the virus. The coating on the face should be closely woven and very tightly against the face.
The US President recently said that the scarf protects better mask.
“It should not be a mask, it can be a scarf,” said Donald trump. — I think depending on the fabric scarf is the best. He really is better.”
Scientists do not confirm the view that the scarf is a better mask.
According to the US Centers for control and prevention of diseases, in addition to the mask to protect the face, you can use bandanas and scarves — but only in a pinch.
In addition to face protection, what other advantages does the mask?
Excluding protective masks also have visual-preventative function — says Harvard Professor Joseph Allen.
The mask is a “reminder that we need to adhere to these measures, they remind people about this barrier. They should be treated as a badge of honor. If I wear a mask in public, it means that I’m worried about your health that I’m worried about the people who surround me, about strangers, if I have a virus. I want to change how I affect others, ” says the Professor.
In addition, he said, the mask gives people a sense of security.
“It gives the feeling that you’re behind the shield, and it adds confidence,” says Joseph Allen.
The doctors are reminded that in addition to masks, we should not forget about other mandatory precautions to protect themselves from infection. In particular to adhere to social distance, to wash their hands often and maintain good hygiene.
Simple step by step instructions on self-production of protective masks can be found here.