The second wave of COVID-19 is out for blood taking one victim at a time. It is extremely important now more than ever to stay protected and adopt coronavirus-proof habits. One of the most important habits is to wear a proper face mask or any other form of face protection if at all you need to step out for emergencies. The first step to protection from the deadly virus would definitely be to stay in the safety of one's home. During the second wave that is laced with COVID-19 Double Mutant B.1.617, you are advised to wear a surgical mask (N95) and a cloth mask or two to avoid coronavirus transmission. However, if wearing N-95 masks, you don't have to double it. Also, it is important to stay correctly informed. COVID-19 Fact Check Series: From 'Coronavirus in Broiler Chicken' to Aspirin 'Cure', 5 Fake Social Media Messages That Have Returned From 2020.
Double Mask Means Double Protection?
But does double mask mean double protection? Well, nothing can provide you with complete protection from the COVID-19 for sure BUT double masking is the closest you can get to it. According to a recent study by CDC, the double mask is safer in terms of protecting from COVID-19. The study found that double masks help reduce the rate of spread of the virus. Double masks provide more protection than single masks and prevent the spread of coronavirus. Double masking is one of the few established methods of preventing the deadly infection.
How Effective is Double Mask?
Wearing a double mask is said to provide full proof protection. It can prevent mask-slips and protect against ill-fit around the nose and mouth. A double mask ensures that the face is completely covered. A new study by the University of North Carolina Health Care shows that wearing two face coverings can nearly double the effectiveness of filtering out SARS-CoV-2-sized particles, preventing them from reaching the wearer's nose and mouth and causing COVID-19.
The findings published in JAMA Internal Medicine also states that the reason for the enhanced filtration is not about adding too many layers of cloth but eliminating any gaps or poor-fitting areas of a mask. "The medical procedure masks are designed to have very good filtration potential based on their material, but the way they fit our faces isn't perfect," said Emily Sickbert-Bennett, PhD, associate professor of infectious diseases at the UNC School of Medicine and lead author of the study.
How and When to Wear the Double Mask?
Dr Kirti Sabnis, Infectious Disease Specialist, Fortis Hospital Kalyan believes that one must "consider wearing a double mask when venturing out in crowded places like – airports, bus stands and while using public/ local transportation for travelling to work, etc." She further says that "one cloth mask on top of a surgical mask or two cloth masks, or one cloth mask on a 3ply mask is an ideal combination"
- A face shield, along with a mask can be used at extremely crowded places
- If one is using an n95 mask, avoid double masking
- Double masks especially for children are avoidable
- Wash the cloth mask daily in hot water
- Wear mask properly - covering the nose, mouth & the chin
- Avoid sharing masks between family members
- After removing any mask, sanitize your hands thoroughly
- Throw disposable mask in a covered bin
- Change your mask and wear a new one at frequent intervals
- Follow social distancing while wearing a mask
- Don’t put your mask around the neck or chin
- Don’t wear wet masks
- Don’t touch the mask often
- Do not remove mask while speaking
- Do not remove the mask if you have to sneeze
- Don’t put a mask on a child younger than 2yrs of age
Maharashtra is witnessing a worrying spike in the number of coronavirus infections in the past few weeks. It is extremely important to stay protected for yourself and the safety of others. Although some people may complain of difficulty breathing due to this but wearing a cloth mask with a three-ply surgical mask is safe. People with asthma and other respiratory disorders must avoid stepping out altogether or consult their concerned doctors. Double masking can prove to be effective in crowded places. Apart from this, in places with a lack of ventilation or in the compartment of the local train, double masks will benefit.
(The above story first appeared on LatestLY on Apr 20, 2021 03:31 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website latestly.com).