While there are still a number of unknowns surrounding coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), it is well known that the use of masks has a profound effect on the spread of COVID-19.

Coronavirus Updates, Your Health | 19 days ago

Why You Should Wear a Mask

We all hear that wearing a mask during the coronavirus pandemic is important. But do we really know why? Here’s what the research says:

While there are still a number of unknowns surrounding coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), it is well known that the use of masks has a profound effect on the spread of COVID-19. In fact, according to a study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), your chances of catching COVID-19 from infected individuals is a lot lower with the proper use of cloth face coverings.

During the study, researchers focused on 2 Missouri hair stylists infected with and symptomatic of COVID-19. Their salon followed a local ordinance requiring masks for all employees and patrons. In accordance with this mandate, both stylists wore double-layered cloth face coverings or surgical masks when seeing clients.

While the stylists had confirmed cases of COVID-19, none of their 139 clients or secondary contacts became ill, and all 67 clients who volunteered to be tested showed no sign of infection.

These findings further verify the importance of cloth face coverings in reducing the spread of COVID-19.

So what does a mask actually do?

Like some viral infections, COVID-19 spreads via air droplets generated when an infected person talks, sneezes, coughs, etc. When the infected individual wears a mask, however, they can prevent most of their respiratory droplets from contaminating the air and infecting others.

According to CDC recommendation, all people 2 years of age and older should wear a cloth face covering in public settings. This is especially important when a social distance of 6 feet or more is not possible.

To ensure maximum protection, those wearing a mask should also follow proper mask-wearing protocols. These include using a mask that covers your nose and mouth and does not fit loosely with large gaps between the covering and the sides of your face or chin.

As an employer, it is wise to educate your employees on the importance of masks and enforce the use of cloth face coverings at your workplace. By remaining diligent in the protection of your team, you will help flatten the COVID-19 curve, further allowing restrictions to be eased, businesses to reopen and the economy to get back in motion.

Learn more about the proper use of masks.