Letter to the Editor
This letter arrived at GSR anonymously. We usually prefer the author’s name, but the message is relevant.
Wearing face masks to help us re-open safely. This shouldn’t be a political rallying point. Putting on a face mask is more than a reflection of your convictions or non-convictions. It is a simple safety measure that can save lives today and tomorrow. This shouldn’t be a debate, but maybe some of the conspiracies that live on the internet need to be explained.
MYTH: Homemade cloth face coverings aren’t effective and shouldn’t be worn in public.
FACT: Wearing a homemade face mask may not prevent a healthy person from getting the virus. However, masks can prevent COVID-19-positive people from spreading the virus to others. Studies show that many people with coronavirus lack symptoms. People who eventually develop symptoms can give the virus to others before they show symptoms. For that reason, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends wearing face masks in public settings where social distancing is difficult, like grocery stores.
MYTH: Any material that covers my mouth will work as a cloth face covering.
FACT: Cloth face coverings should cover both the nose and mouth when you’re in a community setting. Cloth face coverings should:
- Fit snugly against the side of the face
- Be secured with ties or ear loops
- Include multiple layers of fabric
- Allow for breathing without restriction
- Be able to be laundered without damaging or changing its shape.
MYTH: Masks cause a person to breathe in CO2 and could increase breathing difficulties for those with underlying medical issues.
FACT: While although it is true that wearing of masks is initially uncomfortable CO2 releases through the sides of the masks safely. Doctors, nurses, researchers, lab techs, and many more industry types have been wearing masks for long hours on the job with no effects to their breathing or health. There are a very small number of people that would be affected by wearing a mask due to an underlying health condition. Tests on oxygen levels have proven that there is no loss of breathable air for the vast majority of people.
MYTH: The choice to not wear a mask is a constitutional right.