Using Face Masks
Dignity Dialogue|October 2020
While face masks are strongly recommended to prevent the transmission of the corona virus from one person to another, how do you know which one is good for you? K R K Moorthy elaborates.
R K Moorthy

The ongoing pandemic has brought in its wake the compulsory use of face masks. But there is a lot of confusion and controversy about the use and usefulness of face masks. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), USA has recommended that even people who are healthy should wear masks over their mouths and noses when going out of their homes to places where social distancing is not possible. But there is a debate over the use of such masks, especially the homemade masks, as to whether the masks can slow down the spread of the corona virus. Most people agree, however, that wearing the mask might keep people infected with the viral disease from unknowingly passing the virus to another person.

Three types of face masks have been recommended for preventing the spread of the disease: homemade cloth masks, surgical masks and N95 respirator masks. Though face masks may help to reduce the spread of the disease-causing organisms, they may not always protect you or others from transmitting or contracting certain pathogens. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to the virus and minimise transmission by social distancing and practicing the recommended hygiene procedures. The face mask is an addition to the above precautions and not a substitute.

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