Two masks are better than one in fight against COVID

Two masks are better than one in fight against COVID


Two masks are better than one in fight against COVID

Wearing two masks at once can offer more protection against potential coronavirus transmission and exposure than donning a single mask, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has advised.To get more news about nonmedical dustproof mask, you can visit official website.

In a report published this week, CDC researchers said exposure to potentially infectious aerosols decreased by about 95 percent when a cloth mask was worn over a medical procedure mask, a practice also known as double-masking.To provide the same protection, a mask can also be worn by knotting the ear loops of a medical procedure mask and then tucking in and flattening any extra material close to the face.

Medical procedure masks are intended to provide source control (eg, maintain the sterility of a surgical field) and to block splashes,” it said.

“The extent to which they reduce exhalation and inhalation of particles in the aerosol size range varies substantially, in part because air can leak around their edges, especially through the side gaps.”As new, more virulent strains of COVID-19 have emerged in countries around the world, many public figures have been seen wearing two face masks instead of one, including US President Joe Biden.

The country’s top infectious disease expert, Dr Anthony Fauci, has called it “common sense” to wear two masks. “This is a physical covering to prevent droplets and virus to get in,” Fauci told NBC’s Today show.

“If you have a physical covering with one layer, if you put another layer on it, it just makes common sense that it likely would be more effective and that’s why you see people either double masking or doing a version of an N95 [mask].”The CDC’s report is in line with earlier research by two US-based experts who, in a December article published in the scientific journal, Med, recommended wearing a “a cloth mask tightly on top of a surgical mask”.

“If your simple cloth mask filters out 50 percent of particles, then layering two of them on top of each other will increase the efficiency to about 75 percent,” said Linsey Marr, professor of civil and environmental engineering at Virginia Tech who studies viruses in the air, and co-author of the report.

“The surgical-type mask is a good filter but may not fit very well, and the cloth mask adds another layer of filtration and, more importantly, improves the fit by reducing gaps and leaks especially around the cheeks and nose,” Marr told Al Jazeera.Marr said masks will block the new strains with the same efficiency as they did with previous variants.

The key point is that people infected with new variants release more virus particles into the air than individuals infected with previous strains, and it takes fewer virus particles from the new variants to cause infections, Marr said.In its latest interim guidance published in December, the WHO said the general public should wear a non-medical mask where physical distancing of at least one metre cannot be maintained in areas suspected of community transmission.

At an online briefing last week, WHO infectious disease physician Joshua Barocas said there is “ample evidence” that masks help reduce transmission of the coronavirus.

“At this point, we’ve got studies from aeroplanes, hospitals and other congregate settings that provide ample evidence on the importance of masks,” Barocas said.