Health : Coronavirus protective mask: does it work?

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Health : Coronavirus protective mask: does it work?

protection's mask

Can the protective mask really protect against coronavirus? This is a question that many people ask themselves and some even put protective masks on their dogs during outdoor walks.

At the end of 2019, the new coronavirus appeared in China. Since then, the coronavirus has spread very quickly all over the world. This new coronavirus is officially called SARS-CoV-2 and the disease it causes is called COVID-19. While some people infected with COVId-19 have very mild symptoms reminiscent of a common cold, others may find it difficult to breathe, develop pneumonia and even stop breathing. Elderly people and people with underlying health conditions are more at risk for developing more serious health problems from coronavirus.

You have certainly heard a lot on the subject if the protective mask can really protect against coronavirus. In fact, a recent study has shown that searches for Google in connection with protective masks have greatly increased in Taiwan following the announcement of a first case of coronavirus in the country. Step outside the door without a protective mask in Hong Kong, Seoul or Tokyo these days and you will quickly face disapproving looks. Since the start of the coronavirus epidemic, some places around the world have fully embraced wearing masks and everyone who does not wear one quickly becomes a social outcast. So are masks really effective against coronavirus and when should we wear them?

Is the coronavirus protective mask effective?

coronavirus protective mask

What are the two main types of protective masks?

When you hear about COVId-19 protective masks, there are generally two types of masks: surgical mask and the N95 respirator. What is the difference then between the two?

-Surgical masks are loose, disposable masks that cover the nose, mouth and chin. These masks are generally used to protect the wearer of the mask from sprays and large particle droplets or to protect against potential respiratory secretions from the wearer of the mask to others.

Surgical masks can vary in design, but the mask itself is often flat and rectangular in shape and with folds. The top of the mask contains a metal part which can be formed according to the shape of the wearer’s nose to better cover it. Elastic bands or long, straight ties help hold surgical masks in place when worn. These can either be looped behind your ears or tied behind your head.

-N95 respirators are more adjusted face masks. In addition to spraying or splashing, these respirators can also filter 95 percent of small particles. This also includes viruses and bacteria.

The respirator itself is usually circular or oval in shape and is designed to form a tight seal on your face. The elastic bands help the respirator to hold firmly on the face. Some types of N95 respirators may have attachments called exhalation valves that help breathe in and out and build up heat and moisture.

Not all N95 respirators are one size fits all. These respirators should actually be tested before being used to ensure that a suitable seal is formed. If the mask does not actually join the face, it will not be able to offer the appropriate protection. After testing the mask, the wearer of the N95 respirator should continue to perform a leakage check each time the mask is put on the face. It is also important to note that a tight seal cannot be completed for some groups. These groups include children and people with a beard.

What types of masks can protect against the virus?

protect yourself well from coronavirus

And are homemade masks also effective?

In response to the urgent need for protective masks, many people have started to make their own masks from variable materials such as scarves or antibacterial pillowcases. While homemade masks may actually offer some level of protection, they still offer far less protection than surgical masks or respirators.

A scientific study has indicated that homemade masks can be half as effective as surgical masks and 50 times less effective than N95 respirators. Another scientific study has shown that in comparison to homemade masks, surgical masks perform three times better on bacterial filtration tests and twice better on tests for blocking cough droplets.

Health professionals agree that in places where protective masks are not available, homemade masks can be used as a last resort. When considering this option, doctors should be very careful and if possible use the masks in combination with a fascial screen which covers the face and sides of the face and which extends towards the chin and even below.

The protective mask must be worn if you are sick

should we wear masks

Can wearing a protective mask really protect against coronavirus?

SARS-CoV-2 is spread from person to person from small respiratory droplets. These droplets are generated when a person infected with the virus exhales, coughs or sneezes. You can contact the virus if you inspire these droplets.

In addition to this, respiratory droplets that contain the virus can fall on different objects or on many surfaces. By touching contaminated objects or contaminated surfaces and then touching your face, eyes, nose or mouth, you may also be contaminated with COVID-19.

Surgical masks cannot protect against SARS-CoV-2 infection. The mask does not filter small aerosol particles, but it may also leak air from the sides of the mask when you inhale.

N95 respirators can protect small respiratory droplets such as those containing SARS-CoV-2. However, specialists do not recommend the use of this type of respirator outside of hospitals. The reasons can be variable such as for example:

– N95 respirators must be tested before they can be used properly. Poor sealing can lead to leakage which decreases the efficiency of the breathing apparatus.

-Because of their tight fit, N95 respirators can become uncomfortable and poorly ventilated, making them difficult to wear for a longer period of time.

– The global supply of N95 respirators is limited, which means that these masks are crucial for doctors who must have priority access to them.

protective surgical mask

Other effective ways to protect yourself from coronavirus

Remember, there are other effective ways to protect yourself from contacting the coronavirus in addition to using a protective mask. These means include:

– Wash your hands frequently. Use soap and water or an alcohol-based disinfectant.

– Practice social distancing. Avoid contact with people who are sick and stay home if there are many cases of coronavirus in your area or city.

-Be aware of your face. Only touch your face or mouth with clean hands.

How to use a surgical mask if you are sick with coronavirus

If you have symptoms of coronavirus, you should stay home unless you have to go to the hospital for an emergency. If you are with other people or if you have to go to the hospital, it is recommended to wear a surgical mask if you have one.

Remember that even though surgical masks cannot protect against SARS-CoV-2 infection, they can help catch infectious respiratory secretions. And this can be vital in preventing the spread of the virus to others. So how should you use a surgical mask properly?

– Do not start washing your hands with soap and water or disinfecting them with an alcohol-based disinfectant.

-Inspect the mask well before putting it on for possible holes.

-Locate the metal particle of the mask. This is the top of the mask.

– Orient the mask so that the colored side is facing outward or away from you.

-Place the upper part of the mask on your nose, molding the metal strip to the shape of your nose.

-Place the elastic bands carefully behind your ears or tie the long, straight ties behind your head.

– Pull the bottom of the mask down, making sure it covers your nose, mouth and chin.

-Try to avoid touching the mask when you wear it. If you need to touch or adjust it, be sure to thoroughly clean your hands immediately after touching the mask.

-To remove the mask, unlock the bands behind your ears or undo the ties from behind your head. Avoid touching the front of the mask which may be contaminated.

– Throw the mask in the nearest trash can, cleaning your hands well afterwards.

You can find surgical masks in pharmacies. You usually also need to be able to order them online.

alcohol-based antibacterial gel

Use of surgical masks during the COVID-19 epidemic

Here are some good practices to know about surgical masks during the COVID-19 pandemic.

-Book N95 respirator masks for doctors and those working in the emergency room

-Do not wear a surgical mask only if you are sick with coronavirus or if you are caring for someone at home who cannot wear a mask.

-The surgical masks are disposable. Do not reuse them.

– Change your mask if it is damaged or has become wet.

-Always throw the mask you wore cleanly in the nearest trash can.

-Clean your hands before putting on your surgical mask and after you have removed it. In addition, clean your hands if you touch the front of the mask while using it.

how to avoid contacting the coronavirus

Do you need to wear a protective mask if you are caring for someone who may be sick with COVID-19?

If you are caring for someone in your home who is sick with COVID-19, there are things you can do about surgical masks, gloves and cleaning. Try to do these things:

– Isolate the patient in a separate room from the house away from other people who are in the same house. If possible, the patient should use a separate bathroom and toilet.

-Have several spare masks that the patient can wear, especially if he is near others in the house.

-Some people with COVID-19 cannot wear a surgical mask since the mask will make their breathing even more difficult. In this case, it’s up to you to wear one when you are helping him in everyday life and when you are in the same room.

-Use disposable gloves when taking the patient’s dirty linen. Then throw the gloves in the trash after use and wash your hands well.

-Clean your hands several times a day using soap and water or an alcohol-based disinfectant. Try not to touch your eyes, nose or mouth if your hands are not clean.

-Do not forget to thoroughly clean the surfaces frequently used in your home. This includes plans in the kitchen and bathroom, door handles and keypads for phones or computers.

protective mask against virus

Wearing a surgical mask does not protect you from contacting SARS-CoV-2. Wearing the mask can help you not spread the virus to others. While N95 respirators can protect against infection, these masks can only do so if they are used properly.

If you are sick of COVID-19 and you must be around other people, then it is recommended to wear a surgical mask. Also, you must wear it if you are caring for someone at home who cannot wear it. It is very important to wear masks in these two situations. In case you have surgical masks that are not being used, you can donate them by contacting your local hospital or the fire department.

Undocumented cases

There is evidence that there are many cases of the virus that are not documented: these are people who are only ‘silent carriers’ of the virus or people in good health with the virus who do not show or very few symptoms than doctors initially believed.

In China, an estimated one-third of all virus-positive cases have shown no symptoms, according to classified information from the government of China. On the Diamond Princess cruise ship, roughly half of all positive cases on board had no symptoms. A proportion of cases that have had no symptoms have been recorded in Iceland, which tests a larger proportion of people than elsewhere in the world.

what are the types of masks

The prevailing belief is that since these people do not have symptoms, they are not very contagious. But now doctors are starting to wonder about the subject. And maybe if everyone is wearing masks, these silent carriers will not be able to infect others with the virus.

A recent study that studied cases in China showed that undocumented cases of the infection or those with few symptoms are contagious and may be responsible for about 80 percent of the virus positive cases.

Even though masks are products of recent history, experience with contagion and cultural norm. But as the magnitude of this pandemic increases and the evidence and research available, global behavior toward wearing a mask may still change.

coronavirus home protection

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