Across this nation, there is so much in the atmosphere, so much fear, rage, and certainly opinions. We cannot solve all these things with a mask. What are those who’s occupation it is to bring us the information we need to keep ourselves healthy saying? Along with some of the top Medical institutions in the world, we want to put you at rest about wearing non-medical fabric face masks.
We get asked the question a lot? Do masks really do any good? We took a deep dive here. If you are on social media on any platform, surely there are a great deal of opinions…but what are researchers in the top Medical Institutions in this nation reporting about wearing or not wearing masks?
The Wall Street Journal
The Wall Street Journal online recently published an article asking the question, “How Exactly Do you Catch Covid-19?“ Initially, we thought it may be through contact with others, but it seems, from this article, that close contact, for extended periods, particularly with loud talking or singing are the most precarious situations.
Respiratory droplets or, worse yet, aerosol droplets seem to be the major way in which COVID-19 is spread. Proper ventilation as well as distance are two great barriers to contracting the disease. In particular, elongated exposure exacerbates the risk.
The Mayo Clinic has stated that face masks are an essential tool in protecting not only yourself, but others as well. The article asks the question, “So why weren’t face masks recommended at the start of the pandemic? At that time, experts didn’t yet know the extent to which people with COVID-19 could spread the virus before symptoms appeared. Nor was it known that some people have COVID-19 but don’t have any symptoms. Both groups can unknowingly spread the virus to others.” Mayo goes on to state that this caused a turn around by the CDC to recommend masks be worn by all in a public setting to prevent transmission of the disease.
The NIH published, “Use of Face Masks in COVID-19,” where they are comparing Medical frontline workers to the general public. They conclude, “At community level, use of non-medical masks like cloth masks are useful to curtail transmission risk. The price disparity between medical masks and N95 respirators question their cost effectiveness at population level. In this pandemic, medical mask supplies should be reserved for health care workers with encouraging people to use cloth masks while going in public.”
The Cleveland Clinic also weighed in on masks. In their published article on the subject, “Here’s How Wearing a Cloth Mask Helps Fight the Spread of Coronavirus It’ all about protecting others.” They make the case that one of the greatest and selfless acts we can do for one another is wear a mask in order to care for others. There is much evidence that asymptomatic carriers are great at spreading the disease. Much of the reasoning by the Cleveland Clinic hinged on caring for the other in lieu of your own needs.
The article concluded with the various efficacies of the different classes of masks, and ultimately imposed us not to rely on masks alone, but to follow the CDC guidelines, to practice social distancing along with keeping our hands washed or use a hand sanitizer.
Perhaps one of the greatest lessons we are learning as we travel this road together…is that we need one another; we rely on one another; and maybe we are our brothers keeper. Stay safe out there, and not if, but when you need a mask, you might as well get the best for you and your loved ones.