October 6, 2020

COVID-19 and masks: tips for families

Masks help stop the transmission of the COVID-19 virus, but, as many parents will have found, that does not mean that it is easy to get children used to using them.

The practice of wearing a mask to reduce the transmission of germs has a long history in some countries. However, many families will remember 2020 as the first time they had to wear one.

If you've never worn a mask, you likely have a lot of questions. To help you make the best decisions for your family, we've compiled the latest information from experts about masks and COVID-19, how to wear and care for them correctly, and ideas to get your family used to using Japanese cloth face mask. .

Why is the use of the mask recommended?
One of the main routes of transmission of COVID-19 is through the respiratory droplets that we expel when we speak, sing, cough or sneeze. Although research is still being done on this issue, we already know that the virus can also be transmitted by people who do not have symptoms, which means that some people can be contagious without even realizing it.

This is one of the reasons why social distance is so important in places where COVID-19 is present. However, it is not always possible to keep your distance from other people in crowded public places, and it is in those cases that the use of a cloth mask is recommended in order to protect each other.

In any case, it is important to remember that the use of a mask alone is not enough to stop the transmission of COVID-19: we must all continue to maintain our physical distance and wash our hands frequently. If we take these steps, we will defeat COVID-19 together.

What type of mask should my family wear?
Hygienic masks (also called "cloth masks"): If you and your family live in a place where COVID-19 is widespread and do not have any symptoms of the disease, it is recommended that you use hygienic masks.

Medical masks : The availability of medical masks is reduced worldwide due to the pandemic. Its use is recommended if you or a member of your family have a higher risk of contracting a serious illness as a result of COVID-19 (this is the case, for example, of people over 60 years of age or those suffering from other pathologies) or if you are responsible for caring for a person infected with COVID-19. The medical mask should be used to protect others if you have symptoms of COVID-19.

What type of fabric mask is the most suitable?
Cloth masks are available in a wide variety of fabrics; you can make them at home or buy them in a store. Although the use of fabric masks is still being researched, their effectiveness depends on the type of fabric and the number of layers it contains. The World Health Organization recommends three-layer masks with the following characteristics:

an inner layer of absorbent material such as cotton

an intermediate layer of a non-woven material such as polypropylene

an outer layer of a non-absorbent material, such as polyester or a polyester blend

Whichever type of face mask you choose, it should cover the nose, mouth, and chin and be fastened with elastic straps or laces.