Wearing face mask protection is one of the best ways you can reduce the risk of coronavirus infection for you and your loved ones. Despite this fact, the heated discussion about wearing masks has become a polarizing topic that has given rise to the rampant spread of misinformation.
To clear the air, we've compiled 7 of the biggest face mask myths circulating the internet. Let's get to the bottom of this controversy and learn the truth once and for all.
Myth #1: Wearing a face mask worsens coronavirus infection
Many people believe that if they're infected with the coronavirus, wearing a face mask will only make it worse. The logic behind is that they're re-exposing themselves to the viral particle they're exhaling, which in turn will make them sicker.
Fact: This concept was popularized by "Plandemic," a documentary filled with pseudoscience that has been repeatedly debunked by scientists. There's no actual scientific merit to back this declaration up. Research has shown that if you have the coronavirus, you cannot reinfect yourself with it. In fact, more and more evidence is pouring in that suggests once your body has mounted an immune response to COVID-19, you are protected for some time from any possibility of reinfection.
Myth #2: Neck gaiters increase your risk of viral infection
Not too long ago, the media was filled with headlines denouncing neck gaiters, claiming that these fabric wraps actually make your COVID-19 infection risk greater than not wearing any mask at all!
Fact: This claim hit close to home for us. Fortunately, it's completely false. The belief comes from a Duke University study in which researchers were trying to figure out how to measure a mask's effectiveness. Its results were taken out of context, and numerous news sources ran with this twisted version of the story. The truth is that the efficacy of cloth face masks and neck gaiters against COVID-19 infection depends on the material, thickness, and layers of your fabric.
Myth #3: Face mask protection limits your oxygen levels
Many people find that wearing face mask protection is uncomfortable, heats them up, and can make it difficult to breathe.
Fact: While they may cause slight discomfort, face mask protection has consistently been proven to be safe. That's why medical staff use them day-in and day-out in healthcare facilities across the world. When this falsehood caught traction on the internet, many medical doctors jumped into the conversation to debunk the idea that face masks reduce your oxygen saturation levels.
At this point, you may be wondering, "What about health conditions like asthma?" Doctors have repeatedly stated that there are no legitimate reasons for a medical exemption from wearing face mask protection. Instead, it's more important that you find an option that fits your face properly. You can even wear a face mask while doing cardio exercises (although, it does become less effective when drenched in sweat).
With all this said, it's worth noting that industrial-quality respirator masks could affect oxygen intake levels. This can especially be the case if they're worn for long periods of time. But for common types of face mask protection, such as cloth masks, neck gaiters, or surgical masks, oxygen levels should suffer no consequences from prolonged use.
Myth #4: You don't need a mask if you feel fine
Do you feel okay and you don't exhibit a fever or cough? Then you probably don't need to wear face mask protection, right? Wrong!
Fact: Research shows that as many as 40% of coronavirus carriers show no symptoms at all. This means that they are asymptomatic. But these carriers can still spread the sickness to other people, even if they don't know they're contagious. To make matters worse, those who do show signs of coronavirus infection can be contagious before those symptoms ever surface. It's imperative that everyone have a consistent, comprehensive policy on mask-wearing; it's one of the biggest things we can do to slow the spread of this deadly illness.
Myth #5: A face mask only protects the wearer, not the people around them
Many people believe that face masks only help their wearers. For this reason, only people who are scared of getting sick should wear them. but this is wrong.
Fact: Actually, wearing face mask protection is primarily beneficial for the people around you — that's why it's so important that we all do it. Each time you sneeze, cough, breathe, or speak, face masks block respiratory particles from traveling through the surrounding air environment and onto other people.
Confusing public health messaging early on in the pandemic may be the cause of this myth, but the latest research supports that the more people who wear a face mask, the better. To put this in perspective, 2 Missouri hairdressers who were asymptomatic carriers of the coronavirus recently worked with 139 clients. None of those customers became sick because all of them and the stylists wore face masks.
Myth #6: Wearing face mask protection is a political issue
There's no doubt that the topic of wearing face masks has become highly politicized. Consequently, many people now think it's just an issue of politics or "virtue-signaling" that doesn't really impact whether people get sick or not.
Fact: The research is crystal-clear on this matter: Face mask protection works in impeding the spread of COVID-19. In fact, research from the UK found that if its entire population wore masks, this action could slow down the coronavirus enough so that lockdowns were no longer necessary.
Myth #7: If you wear a face mask, you can be close to other people
Several people have taken the latest guidance from health officials to mean that, they can be close to other people in public if they wear face masks.
Fact: Masks are our first line of defense in the fight against COVID-19. But they are not enough. In addition to wearing face mask protection, people should also take other precautions to decrease their chances of becoming infected. Wash your hands frequently and maintain six feet of distance from others whenever it's possible. These actions are small, but they can save thousands of lives.
Are you looking for new face masks or neck gaiters? Check out our shop! It has a wide selection that's sure to satisfy your needs.