Can wearing a medical face mask protect you from the new coronavirus? It’s a question lots of people are asking, including animal owners that are putting canine face masks on their dogs. If it’s an ordinary surgical face mask, the answer is no, Dr. William Schaffner, an infectious disease specialist at Vanderbilt University in Tennessee, told Live Science.
A more specialized mask, known as an N95 respirator, can protect against the newest coronavirus, also called SARS-CoV-2. The respirator is thicker than a surgical mask, but neither Schaffner nor the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) recommend it for public use, at the very least not at this point. That’s because, in part, it’s challenging to put on these Masks For COVID-19 and put them on for long time periods, he stated.
Specialists receive retraining annually regarding how to properly fit these respirators round the nose, cheeks and chin, making sure wearers don’t breathe round the edges of the respirator. “When you accomplish that, it turns out the work of breathing, since you’re experiencing a really thick material, is harder. You must work to breathe inside and out. It’s a bit claustrophobic. It can get moist and hot inside,” Schaffner said.
“I know that I can use them when I need to for about one half-hour,” he added. “But then, I have to go out from the isolation room, remove it and try taking some deep breaths, kind of cool off, before I can go back in.”
While it still might be easy to snag an N95 respirator online, Schaffner advised against it. If a lot of people unnecessarily stockpile respirators, a shortage could put the health of medical workers and those who need them in danger, Schaffner said.
Surgical masks – The thinner surgical mask is intended for surgeons, because these products do a good job of keeping pathogens from your doctor’s nose and mouth from entering the surgical field, Schaffner said.
In some Asian countries, including Japan and China, it’s not uncommon to view people wearing surgical masks in public areas to guard against pathogens and pollution. But those masks don’t help much inside the context of a virus, Schaffner said. “They’re not made to keep out viral particles, and they’re not nearly as tightly fitted around your nose and cheeks” being an N95 respirator, he stated.
“Could they be of some use? Yes, nevertheless the effect may very well be modest,” Schaffner said.
He noted that many people wear Masks For Coronavirus as they are sick with a cold or the flu and they don’t need to get others sick. However, if you’re sick, it’s best just not to attend public areas. “That’s enough time to keep home,” Schaffner said.
People sick with COVID-19, however, should wear face masks to reduce the chance of infection to folks around them, according to the CDC. Health care workers and those “taking care of someone contaminated with COVID-19 in close settings (both at home and in a healthcare facility),” should also wear face masks, the CDC reported.
People wearing surgical masks should dump them after each use, the CDC added.
Otherwise, the simplest way to avoid having the coronavirus is always to, first and foremost, postpone any travel to places with known outbreaks. You can also thoroughly wash both hands with soap; avoid touching the eyes, nose and mouth dspdzm unwashed hands; avoid close contact with people who are sick; and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, the CDC recommends.
Regarding dog owners putting N95 Masks For Sale on their own dogs, a Pomeranian dog in Hong Kong tested positive a “weak positive” for COVID-19. That dog is currently in quarantine, however is not showing symptoms of the disease, according to a March 5 piece in the South China Morning Post. However, it’s unclear the way the dog was tested for that illness. What’s more, it doesn’t appear that pets can transmit the virus to humans, and experts told people with pets to not panic.