As the COVID 19 pandemic continues to grow beyond boundaries, it has become a norm to wear masks in public places. However, there are various myths surrounding this practice, and many people are not in favor of using masks. It has also become a political debate in many states as health authorities and politicians do not share the same opinion. In this regard, let us analyze some of the popular myths floating around regarding the usage of masks during the COVID 19 pandemic.
Common Myths Associated With Wearing Masks During COVID 19
To control the spread of the virus, the use of a mask is considered mandatory these days. There are ample varieties available in the market as far as the features and quality are concerned. One can get a simple cotton cloth mask to one which is designed specifically for medical staff. One can find masks with different layers and respirators or without a respirator. However, every mask has its own pros and cons, which one needs to analyze carefully before going for any of them present in the market.
To begin with, the usage of masks is suggested by doctors and medical practitioners. The Centre for disease control and prevention authorities suggest the common public wear homemade masks when they are moving out of the home. Even though this does not offer the best protection like professional-grade N95 masks, it can still prevent coronavirus spread by a huge margin.
The problem comes with both people who are in favor of wearing masks and those against it. The people who support the wearing of masks in public places went to the extreme of using professional-grade masks and disposable masks. This led to a situation where the medical professionals did not have an adequate supply of PPE kits and protection masks. Considering this situation, the authorities had to suggest that the common public stick with homemade masks during this emergency situation and spare the professional masks to front line workers fighting the pandemic.
On the other hand, people who are not in favor of wearing masks are at greater risk of contracting and spreading the virus. As the coronavirus can spread from one person to another when they are in close proximity, not wearing masks exposes people to the virus in a direct way. For this reason, doctors suggest wearing some sort of mask when people venture into public places.
There are various myths surrounding the usage of masks during this pandemic situation. Some people believe that using masks will protect them completely from coronavirus. However, this is not completely true. If you are using a professional-grade mask-like N95 that is used by doctors and medical professionals, you can get adequate protection from coronavirus. On the other hand, when you are wearing a homemade mask or other masks that are not of professional-grade, there is no guarantee that the virus will not affect you in the future. Even then, it is found that wearing masks at least reduces the chances of the virus getting into the mouth and nose. In this way, it can prevent the spread of coronavirus to a major extent.
Many people also believe that wearing masks can cause difficulty in breathing. This is not true in most cases unless you are wearing it for long hours. Using the regular homemade masks will not affect your breathing in most cases when you are using a thin mask. However, when you are wearing a professional-grade mask for long hours, you may experience mild discomfort, and it will go away if you remove the mask once in a while. In this manner, you can still continue to use the mask without much difficulty.
Yet another myth floating around with regards to using masks is that they increase the chances of lung infection and other related health problems. However, there is no evidence to suggest that this is true. It is true that medical-grade masks block microorganisms on the surface and helps the wearer to not get in contact with the virus. However, it is essential to remove them safely and clean them with proper disinfectant before using them every time. Doctors and COVID 19 front warriors are asked not to touch the mask with their hands and remove them wearing gloves. The masks do not lead to any sort of lung infection or other problems when used in the right manner. When it comes to homemade masks, changing them on a daily basis and washing them before reuse will be more than enough to prevent infections.
Some people believe that using masks for long hours will mean that the body does not get enough oxygen. This is not true as the masks do not have the ability to block oxygen in any manner. You may experience mild discomfort when using the mask for an extended period. A study was conducted with patients suffering from chronic breathing problems, and it was observed that wearing professional-grade N95 masks can increase carbon dioxide levels to some extent in some cases. This can cause health problems in some people, especially when they suffer from asthma and other breathing issues. For this reason, WHO suggests that such people who experience a lot of discomforts while wearing masks can restrict its usage to limited hours.
On the other hand, when it comes to homemade masks, they do not increase carbon dioxide levels in any manner as they are usually thin and allow passage of air freely without any hassles. In this manner, you should always give preference to using a homemade mask whenever you are venturing out of the home. This can help you to stay away from contracting the virus in a direct manner. However, you should always keep your masks clean and wash them every day after using it for a few hours. You can cut the chain of this pandemic by choosing to wear masks. In this way, you can also be part of the fight against coronavirus in a small way.