Now more than ever, it is crucial for you to wear a mask when you leave your home. It’s not only important for your own protection, but also for the protection of the people around you.
While wearing a face mask in public used to be something that you really only saw when you were at the airport, it has become a day-to-day norm for people in every country around the world. That is of course because of the spread of the deadly coronavirus.
Now that we are many months into the pandemic, chances are good that you are well aware of the benefits of wearing a face mask. However, if you are looking for a refresher course on why you should be making it a priority to wear a mask whenever you leave your home.
1. Masks help people protect each other
The major way in which COVID-19 spreads from one infected person to a non-infected person is through respiratory droplets that are produced when someone with the coronavirus coughs, sneezes, talks or even breaths. What face masks do is block these droplets from spreading out of an infected person’s mouth. They act as a crucial blocker and help contain particles from landing on a healthy person.
While there was some discussion earlier on in the pandemic about whether or not COVID-19 was really impeded by face masks, the research is now far more clearly in favor of the belief that face masks are vital to inhibiting its spread. In one study, it was found that droplets can spread more than eight feet when there is no mask. A bandana over the mouth cuts that spread by over half, to approximately three feet and seven inches. A surgical mask cuts that spread down even further.
Beyond that, if there is one person who is infected but wearing a mask, and another person who is healthy and also wearing a mask, the chance of spreading is far less than if just one of the individuals, or neither, are wearing masks.
2. You may be asymptomatic
One of the major reasons why COVID-19 has spread so widely across the entire globe is because a larger percentage of people who become infected show absolutely no signs whatsoever. In fact, some studies have shown that as many as 40 percent of people infected with the virus show no signs of sickness at all. That means that even if you are feeling absolutely fine, you may be carrying a disease that could prove deadly for someone who is older or has a weaker immune system.
While masks may be a bit of a nuisance to wear everyone, you should really consider it a part of your civic duty to the members of your community to wear a mask whenever possible. You want to protect society just like you want society to protect you. Wearing a mask in case you are an asymptomatic carrier of COVID-19 is one of the best and easiest ways to do just that.
3. Masks protect you
While there is some uncertainty about how crucial masks are when it comes to protecting the wearer, there is no question that offers an important line of defense. The truth is that mask-wearing works at its very best when all people wear a mask. If just one person in a grocery store or mall, for example, decides that they do not have to wear a mask, and if they just happen to be infected, they could end up infecting lots of people whether or not they are wearing a mask.
There are few masks that offer almost complete protection for the wearer, but there is no doubt that they do work. In fact, it was found that states within the United States that have put mask mandates in place have seen a much greater decline in infection and community spread compared to places that did not mandate mask-wearing.
4. Masks will help your favorite stores and restaurants
One of the greatest impacts that people have seen as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic is the fact that businesses all over the country and world have seen massive drops in revenues. As people are either not able, or not comfortable to go into stores these days, sales have plummeted, and some major corporations have already started to have to shutter their doors for good. It’s a tragic outcome of this deadly disease and will likely impact people around the world for far longer than the actual illness does.
With that being said, if you are willing to wear a mask at all times, places could open up for business much sooner than you think! In fact, countries that issued mask mandates and took the virus very seriously from the beginning have already been able to open major aspects of their economy.
It is a sad truth that the reluctance for some Americans to wear masks has had a major impact on their economies inability to open and stay open.
The longer people don’t wear masks, the more infections there will be, the longer it will take for economies to open up fully. It’s as simple as that. Even if you are not personally afraid of contracting the illness yourself, you should be afraid of what the illness is doing to the mom and pop shops around your town. If you don’t want them to disappear completely, it’s time that you start doing your part and mask up.
5. It’s the only real option
Without a vaccine or drugs that have been found the effectively treat COVID-19, prevention through wearing a mask is truly the last best option right now. Hopefully, one day soon there will be treatments that help people recover quickly or help bolster immune systems from the spread, but right now the very best thing that everyone can do is protect themselves and everyone around them by simply putting on a mask whenever they leave the home.