Several states have made the use of face masks compulsory as they are known to help in the prevention of spread of coronavirus droplets. Each one of us owns face masks, but do you actually know how to wear them correctly? We interviewed some doctors, who are working in the frontline to treat the disease, about when to wear or skip wearing the face masks, and here is what they had to say.
When Should You Wear a Face Mask?
Dr. Warren Michalski says face masks should be worn whenever one has apprehensions of spreading the coronavirus or a similar disease from you to someone else. Masks tend to trap the droplets from the mouth and nose and keep it contained, considering that you are the carrier.
- In Enclosed Areas
MD, Eliza Chin says that people should face wear a mask when they are in an enclosed area or a room where people other than those of your home are present, and it is not possible to maintain social distancing.
- When You are Out Shopping for Grocery
- While Travelling in Public Transport
People are likely to use public transports since states are reopening. It is significant that you never remove your mask whilst inside the public transport as the chances of you contracting the virus or infecting others with the virus is higher in crowded places.
- When You are in a Beauty Salon
Beauty salons are also reopening their businesses slowly. The salon employees require working closely with their customers, which makes it difficult to maintain the recommended distance for safety, thus it is vital that you wear a face mask.
- When You are in a Common Area
Dr. Chin suggests that you wear a mask while working or walking through common areas like the elevators, hallways, parking lots, and staircases.
- When You are at a Protest
If you are a part of a protest and are amidst people that are voicing for certain things, then you must wear a mask. Virus spreads through respiratory droplets while sneezing, talking, speaking, coughing, and singing, explains Dr. Bindiya Gandhi.
- Pregnant Women in Labour
Several respiratory droplets tend to get into the atmosphere when pregnant women are pushing during their labor. Hospitals encourage wearing masks to reduce the possible spread of coronavirus, says Dr. Madeline Sutton.
- Social Distancing is Not Always Possible
There could be several instances during a day when you wouldn’t be able to maintain social distancing probably at a restaurant or at work or a park. Wearing a mask would help in protecting you from a possible infection.
When Can You Skip Wearing a Face Mask?
There are times when you wouldn’t require wearing a mask.
- When You are at Home
Dr. Dianah Lake says people don’t have to wear a face mask when they are at home with the family members with whom you have been staying throughout the shutdown and have had no exposure to the coronavirus.
- When You are in the Car
There is absolutely no reason to why one must have their face mask on when they are driving their car. However, if you are at the drive through or picking or paying for something purchased, then you must have your mask on. If you are using taxi services or sharing a taxi with another passenger, then you must wear a mask, reveals Dr.Lily Barsky.
- When No One Else is Around You in an Open Space
Dr. Giuseppe Aragona says that when you are in an open space such as a beach, a field, or park and there is nobody around you or they are scantily spread far off then one should utilize this opportunity to relieve their face of the masks and breathe in some fresh air. Our bodies are craving fresh air this year because of the virus and breathing in the cool and fresh air can prove beneficial for our mental health.
- When You are Working Out Indoors, With No People Around You
Exercising exerts your body, and we need to breathe more. If you are working out on a bike and there are very few people inside the gym that are maintaining their distance from you, then you can remove your mask. Sick people, including you, should not be working out, says MD, Kemunto Mokaya.
- When You are Eating
You can take off your mask when you are seated at your table, in a restaurant says Dr. Maggie Cadet. But if you get up to use a washroom or move around the room, then the face mask should be on.
Dr. Barsky says that if someone is using a disposable mask, then they should discard it before they sit at the table, or if they are using a reusable mask, then it should be stored far from the table, so the food is not contaminated.
- When in the Water
Masks can be stored away when at the pool or the beach, says Dr. Cadet. Wet masks are easily permeable and it is best that one maintain a safe distance from people they don’t live with.
- When You Have a Certain Disability
Dr. Chin says, people with developmental disabilities, medical or mental health disabilities can avoid wearing masks. Some people are hard of hearing, or if you are communicating with someone that is hard of hearing and require that they see your face to understand what you are trying to explain, can be exempted from wearing a mask.
Every state has a set of laws in place. Say, for instance, Montana doesn’t require the people to wear masks; however, it is compulsory for the people of California to wear a mask. You must check with the state laws and the latest advisories from the government and adhere to them.
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. Anti Vibration Technologies does not claim responsibility for this information.