Covid-19 pandemic: Dos and Don’ts of Using Masks

Bhubaneswar: While massive awareness has been launched on how to protect oneself from contracting the deadly novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) that has been declared pandemic, people often feel invincible wearing a face mask while stepping out of their homes.

In these uncertain times, people run a risk of getting infected if they don’t use the protective gear properly.  The availability of N95 masks is scarce and the government has advised to cover the mask with literally anything that prevents the invasion of the virus into the body. The Health and Family department of Odisha has made it mandatory from Thursday (April 9) to use mask when outside.

Considering the advisory, do we keep these below mentioned things in mind while using a mask?

Let’s now know the DO’s and Don’ts of using mask:

  • Pretend as if you are not wearing a mask at all.
  • Do not adjust your mask or reach out to the itchy areas as touching the mask would defeat the purpose.
  • Wear a mask if you are coughing or sneezing.
  • Masks are effective only when used in combination with frequent hand-cleaning with alcohol-based hand rub or soap in water.
  • If you are wearing mask, then you must know how to use it and dispose it properly.
  • Before putting on a mask, clean hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.
  • Cover the mouth, nose and chin with mask and make sure that there is no gap between your face and the mask.
  • Avoid touching the mask while using it and if you do, clean your hands with alcohol based hand rub or soap and water.
  • Replace the mask with a new one as soon as it is damp and do not re-use single use masks.
  • Never put the used mask anywhere without proper washing/disposal . Wash the reusable mask with detergent, dry it in the sunlight and use it whenever you step outside.
  • To remove the mask, always remove the mask from behind and not from the front and discard it immediately in a closed bin. Clean hands immediately with soap and water.
  • Do not use damaged mask.
  • Most importantly, don’t think a mask can protect you or exempts you from social distancing or hand washing. It better to stay home and stay safe and thus it prevents us from the deadly virus.

The DIY masks may be a wonderful idea but they aren’t full-proof against the virus. But, it can be useful  in filtering out virus particles.

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