With the pandemic wreaking havoc relentlessly in the current wave, letting our guards down is simply not an option. The price to pay is too high if we become even slightly lax or negligent in following all the necessary precautions. From having to wear a good fitting mask covering both the nostrils and the mouth whenever we stepped out, we have reached a point where the government now has recommended wearing one even while indoors in proximity with our own family.
Masking is the primary precaution that needs to be strictly adhered to in order to contain and combat this wave and it's various variants. The increasing positive cases in most parts of India, the contagiousness of the coronavirus and the ever-increasing load and pressure on our healthcare system, has made it necessary to even double mask while stepping out of our houses.
How do you double mask and how does it help?
Wearing two masks, both masks covering the nostrils as well as the mouth snugly is recommended by healthcare professionals now as this creates a strong barrier making it our best bet from contracting as well as transmitting the covid-19 virus. With claims from the CDC assuring that double masking with a surgical mask and a cloth mask on top it can cut the exposure by as much as 95%, it has become a practice that we absolutely must follow to cut the infection chain. Double masking also contours the face better and prevents leakage of air.
How to choose masks for double masking?
- Choose a surgical mask and a cloth mask. The surgical should be your primary mask worn under the cloth mask.
- The cloth mask should have multiple layers of fabric in order to achieve better filtration.
- The purpose of the second mask is also to push the edges of the inner mask snugly against the face and ensure that there aren’t any gaps.
Why not two surgical masks for double masking?
It is recommended to choose one surgical mask and one cloth mask for double masking as combining two surgical masks or N95 masks for this purpose will not offer a better fit. The cloth mask ensures a snug gap-less fit for the inner mask.
How to ensure that your mask fits right?
- When worn correctly, your mask should press in with airflow.
- If your glasses get foggy, it implies that air is escaping from your mask. Not only does this mean that your mask makes glass wearing uncomfortable, but it also means that your mask is not protecting you and others around efficiently. When wearing glasses, ensure that the frame of your glasses sits comfortable on the nose clip of your mask.
- Check the fit of your mask by breathing out forcibly. If this causes you to blink, it implies air escaping out of your mask and hitting your eyes. This isn’t the right fit.
- To improve the fit of a surgical mask, which often leaves gaps at the sides, knot the ear loops where the join the edge of the mask and fold and tuck the unneeded material under the edges.
Some tips to keep in mind while masking
- Always keep your mask on in small and closed spaces such as elevators, even if you are alone, as it is proven that virus particles remain suspended in air and can be inhaled if the space has been used by an infected person recently.
- Keep your mask on for a period of around 30 mins after you leave the proximity of an infected person or after having visitors to avoid inhaling aerosols.
- When taking off your mask, do so by the ear loops.
- Wash your hands thoroughly before and after wearing a mask.
- Do not touch the exposed part of your mask while adjusting it or removing it.
- Wash masks regularly, and replace when it is time to do so.
What to do if the Mask is causing irritation or rashes:
Use a Skin Barrier Gel. Maintaining a strong skin barrier is as important as wearing a mask. Use of skin barrier gels prevents mask related discomfort, skin irritation and rashes by protecting your skin from harmful foreign substances. It enters deep into the skin’s layers to maintain barrier task.
SkinEasi activ, is India's first anti chafing gel that prevents skin irritation and rashes due to prolonged use of Face Mask and Face Shields.
SkinEasi Second Skin patented technology forms an invisible, breathable, non-staining, non greasy & water repellent film which protects from rash, redness, soreness due to rubbing of skin on skin, skin on clothing or prolonged use of Face mask. The barrier film reduces the friction by >80% and does not rub off easily. Hence giving long lasting protection against friction related skin rash and irritation even in presence of sweat, rain or water.
With proper precautions and social distancing, we can tide over this second wave keeping ourselves and those around us safe. It is no more just a precaution, but our prime responsibility to stay safe for ourselves and those around us.