Whether you wear a face mask because you’ve been told you have to or because you’re legitimately afraid of catching COVID-19, you should know how much protection face masks offer.
Face masks their level of protection is a hotly debated topic. Regardless, you likely have to wear a face mask to do just about anything in your community. Most governments across the globe have mandated masks, even at a very local level.
Maybe you’re considering providing your employees with face masks branded to match uniforms or to promote your business. If you require masks at your business, it only makes sense to provide branded face masks from Custom PPE.
Regardless of where you stand on wearing a mask during COVID-19, answering the question, how much protection do face masks offer isn’t easy. Let’s look at what a few different sources have to say on the topic.
What does the Mayo Clinic say?
A very trusted source in the medical field, the Mayo Clinic states that protective face masks and other preventative measures can help slow the spread of COVID-19. They say, “Yes, face masks combined with other preventive measures, such as frequent handwashing and social distancing, help slow the spread of the virus.”
The level of protection varies on the mask, and the Mayo Clinic breaks it down by each type of mask, including:
- Surgical Masks – Helps keep droplets from spreading and will filter out larger particles from the air
- N95 Masks – Block as much as 95% of tiny particles
- Cloth Masks – Meant to trap droplets and protect others
What does LiveScience Say about Face Masks?
They believe face masks are an effective option to help contain the spread of COVID-19. However, they state masks have to be used, along with social distancing.
LiveScience believes individuals wearing masks might be protected from passing COVID-19 onto others. However, they do state, “the evidence for the efficacy of surgical or homemade masks is limited, and masks aren’t the most important form of protection against the coronavirus.”
What does Men’s Health Think?
An article published by Melissa Matthews in Men’s Health Magazine believes wearing a mask protects you from COVID-19. Many other articles have stated cloth masks don’t offer any protection for you but might offer protection for those around you.
However, this article cites a paper from the Journal of General Internal Medicine, which states masks protect more than just the people around you.
The article states that individuals that wore masks may have suffered from less severe symptoms of COVID-19. The author says, “Without a vaccine, wearing a mask—along with handwashing and physical distancing— remains our best tools in fighting COVID-19.”
While the debate on how much protection face masks provide for the person wearing them and those around them will likely continue, one thing is for sure, face masks are going to be a part of life into the future. It might be months or even years before we can go in public without a mask over our face.