Masks (face coverings) are proven to help slow the spread of COVID-19.  As such, it is now required to wear such face coverings in the majority of states. As experts continue to study the developing virus and ways to curb the spread, studies have been conducted on which face coverings are most effective. Here are their findings:

Consistent Guidelines Will Slow the Spread of COVID-19

Anecdotally, an experiment yielded these results:

  • In areas with a mask requirement: 15.1% decrease in new cases
  • In areas with no mask requirement: 30% increase in new cases

 

Wearing Proper Face Coverings is Essential Indoors

We know it is crucial to wear face masks in public (outdoors), but the Association of American Medical Colleges recently reiterated the importance of wearing face coverings when indoors.

WHY?

  • When people congregate inside, the air is constantly recycled and becomes stale without the flow of fresh air.
  • This increases the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Even if people are more than six feet apart, face masks should be worn to prevent the spread of this deadly virus.

 

Stop Wearing Face Shields and Masks with Valves

  • The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) does not support the use of face shields, as they are intended to protect the eyes and face, not control the spread of coronavirus.
  • Face masks with valves have gained popularity among the public because of the false impression that they are high-tech. These masks were made for construction workers to use on-site, to allow them to breathe easily while blocking dust particles. The CDC does not recommend using these masks, as they do not slow the spread of COVID-19.

 

Neck gaiters – good or bad? 

Neck gaiters are cloth worn around the neck and pulled up to cover the face when needed. It was reported initially that neck gaiters might be worse than actual masks; however, a recent study refutes this claim by stating neck gaiters are as effective as homemade masks, especially if there are two layers of cloth.

Airline Guidelines

Just in time for end of summer travel, airlines have released specific guidelines for facemasks and coverings.  These guidelines explicitly ban masks with valves and the wearing of face shields without a mask underneath.