Until recently, almost none of us has faced the need to constantly wear masks. But today, a medical mask is simple means of protection, one of the preventive measures for the spread of respiratory infections, including COVID-19.
In this regard, it is important to know how to properly put on and wear a medical mask, so that it protects, and does not harm. According to WHO, improper use of the mask can significantly reduce its effectiveness.
First of all, before using the mask, you need to wash your hands thoroughly with warm water and soap or treat them with an antiseptic and then put on a clean mask.
It is necessary to wear the mask so that it covers the mouth and nose, carefully fixing it on the face, leaving no gaps. The mask must fit snugly to the bridge of your nose. To do this, the metal strip must be pressed on a top with fingers to the nose, then straighten the folds.
It is important to remember that you always need to hold the mask by the elastic bands, trying not to touch its external surface. If you touch it, then you should thoroughly wash your hands with soap or disinfect them.
According to doctors, you can wear a mask on any side – the main thing is that the anchor should snugly fit to the nose. Microbes will accumulate equally “both on the blue and white surface”.
To remove the mask also is essential in the proper way – with the elastic bands, folding its inner side inwards. The used disposable medical mask must be placed in a separate pack, sealed and only then thrown into the trash can.
The medical mask must be changed every two-three hours of continuous use.
As for non-disposable masks, they can only be reused after careful processing. At home, the mask should be washed, then treated steamily with an iron. After processing, the mask should not remain wet, so at the end it must be ironed without the function of steaming. It isn’t recommended under any circumstances to use fabric (for example, cotton or gauze) masks.
IT IS IMPORTANT! The World Health Organization notes that mask is primarily intended for those who have already become ill: it holds most of the saliva of a coughing or sneezing person. Thus, the air gets much less viruses and the risk of infection for others is significantly reduced.
In addition, the mask is appropriate if you are indoors among large number of people, in public transport, and when nursing, but there is no need to wear it outdoors.
It should be noted that the mask does not afford 100% protection – it is effective only in combination with other methods of prevention (avoiding contact, frequent hand washing, disinfection of objects).