Health News: The case of wearing a face mask to protect against COVID-19 is strong. According to the latest scientific brief by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), covering the face can reduce the risk of coronavirus infection by more than 70%. But if wearing a face mask provides solid protection, is it better to wear two masks at the same time? Some people have begun “double-masking” to increase their odds of staying COVID-free, and the trend made us wonder what science says. Experts told us here.
At this time, the very little scientific data point to any benefits or drawbacks of wearing more than one face mask, Scott Segal, MD, Thomas H. Irving Professor and president of anesthesiology at Wake Forest Baptist Health of Winston-Salem, North Carolina, explains health. (Dr. Sehgal tested on a range of textile materials to see how effective they would be as masks for the 2020 study in partnership with the Wake Forest Institute for Regenerative Medicine.)
A small study directly addresses the benefit of wearing two masks, but this has not yet been peer-reviewed (meaning that the results have yet to be directed to doctors and physicians). In that study, researchers found that a two-mask “sandwich” might prove to be better when a high-functioning mask is not available for COVID-19.
“Wearing two masks may be a reasonable idea if the filtration capability of the mask is not very strong,” Dr. Sehgal says.
Dr. Most studies, including Segal, have found that multiple layers of fabric make viral particles better than a single layer, and two layers of high-quality fabric with a tight weave perform best. Dr. “With poor quality material, more layers can perform better,” says Sehgal.
It is a “sandwich”, Drs. Sehgal suggests
Wearing two masks works the same way — and mixing two layers of relatively unqualified material can be performed better than the same poor quality mask. In addition, wearing a relatively loose-fitting surgical or another medical type of mask with a tightly fitting cloth mask can create a better mask “sandwich”, Drs. Sehgal suggests.
Infectious disease specialist Amesh Adalja, MD, senior scholar at the Johns Hopkins University Center for Health Security in Maryland, agrees that the effectiveness of wearing two face masks depends on the mask material. “Where you are required to wear two masks depends on the quality of the mask,” Dr. Adalja explains health. “It depends on the fit of the mask and how well it works as a barrier.”
The issue comes down to quality vs. quantity: If a well-fitting, effective face mask is not available, two low-quality face masks worn together can improve safety.
However, if wearing two masks makes breathing difficult, then eat one of them. “No mask works if you can’t comfortably wear it, and double the mask that you can’t breathe easily then you can either turn them off or breathe around them Are, can neutralize the filtration effect, ”Dr. Segal says.
Wearing 2 masks a Good Idea Against COVID-19
“It’s a double-edged sword,” Dr. Krylov agrees. “An extra barrier may sound like a good idea, but this extra layer can make breathing more difficult, making it more likely that you pull on the mask for better breathing and not adequately holding it in place Keep. “
Adding double-masking or filtering materials can be the latest epidemic trends, but you don’t have to jump on them because you see other people doing it. Dr. “The general consensus is that a suitable mask is either a surgical mask or a cloth mask, which consists of two layers,” says Krylov.
Here’s a quick refresher on the best face masks: The CDC recommends choosing a mask that has two or more layers of laundry. It should completely cover your nose and mouth and should fit well against the edges of your face (no gaps). Do not wear a mask that is made of vinyl or any other fabric, which makes it difficult to breathe. The CDC also advises against a mask with an exhalation valve or vent, as these can escape virus particles.
The information in this story is accurate as of press time. However, as the situation around COVID-19 continues to evolve, it is possible that some data may have changed since publication. While Health is trying to keep our stories as updated as possible, we encourage readers to stay informed on news and recommendations for their own communities using the CDC, WHO, and their local public health department as resources.