A Mask Will Help!
If you are around a person who has COVID-19, and s/he coughs, the person will send tiny droplets of coronavirus into the air. If you are not wearing a mask, you might have been exposed to the virus. If you are wearing a mask, covering your mouth and nose, it can help to block the droplets when someone coughs or sneezes. However, a cloth mask won’t block the coronavirus 100 percent – it still offers you protection. You receive additional protection when you practice social distancing (staying six feet away from other people) and thoroughly washing your hands.
Masks That Can Protect You
N95 respirator masks and surgical masks are worn mostly by doctors, nurses, and other healthcare professionals. If you do not work in health care, then a cloth mask might be best for you to wear. It should have at least two layers of material. If you add a copper or wire ribbon on the nose, it will help your mask to fit tighter. Another source is to go to a hardware store and buy a dust mask. They look similar to an N95, but they do not filter out as many particles. If you can find a neoprene mask, they help to stop the droplets that carry the virus.
Wearing A Face Mask
The Center for Disease Control (CDC) strongly urges everyone to wear a mask when in public. The agency particularly stresses wearing a mask in places where it is difficult to stand six feet away from other people. An example would be a grocery store, a department store, or a pharmacy. There are some exceptions to wearing a mask. These include a child under two years of age, any person who has trouble breathing, anyone who is incapacitated or unable to remove the mask without assistance.
Making A Mask
Many people are making their masks out of cotton, linen, t-shirts, bandanas, or other personal choices. When deciding on making a mask, you should choose a thicker, more densely woven cotton fabric, including quilting cotton or cotton sheets. A material such as a stretchy knit is not the best choice. The best idea is to find a balance to make a good mask. You want a fabric that does not allow droplets to pass through, but you also want to make sure you can breathe adequately when your mask is in place on your face.
It does not matter if you make your own suitable mask or if you buy a mask – the important point is to make sure you wear your mask when in public.
For me, I find it very disturbing to be out in public and walk by someone who is not wearing a mask only to have them cough right when we meet up. This has happened to many more than once since the beginning of this pandemic. Also, it bothers me when young people have parties and offer a jackpot prize to the first person in the group to be diagnosed with COVID-19.