In the struggle to prevent the spread of coronavirus, a face mask is one of the most important tools. It is an inevitable part of public health guidelines since the virus started to spread. It is advisable to wear the mask in the crowds, especially where social distancing seems strenuous. A face mask is believed to be a protective tool that doesn’t allow the particles to move across. However, the use of a mask was always a topic of debate since the beginning of the pandemic. There are several different theories on the use of the face shield. Some advocate the use of mask and a few are indifferent to it, while there are others who feel the mask is useless. They may be right because the research literature on mask usage doesn’t provide definitive answers.
The researchers are mounting about how some homemade mask can also help stop viral particles from entering someone’s airway. Northeastern University has contributed to the scientific evidence with tests to examine the filtration capabilities of different sets of masks. The researchers at Northeastern tested more than 70 homemade face masks made of common fabric. Their findings say that different combinations of common fabric can be as effective at stopping particles from passing through as the N95 respirators. Most common fabrics independently won’t be able to serve the purpose but a combination of several layers will suffice.
A water repellant layer that helps prevent aqueous substances like respiratory droplets from passing through the mask enhances its quality. Moreover, other than the number of layers what matters for a quality face mask is the fitness of the mask. Not all masks are created equal, and neither are people’s faces. There are generally some voids left by sideways which lets the particles into our bodies despite putting on a face mask. The researchers found a trick to improve the fitness of the face mask; a layer of nylon inside the homemade mask.
However, the face mask needs to be handled with utmost care under hygienic conditions and certain precautions as well. Children below two or people with breathing issues should avoid using a mask.