Making mask sense

With many children now required to wear masks, questions have arisen about what is the best type to wear. University of Canterbury Associate Professor of Epidemiology Dr Arindam Basu offers some evidence-based advice.

  1. A medical, blue and white, disposable surgical mask fitted to a child’s face is the best option. They can be adjusted to make them smaller in size and they have two layers. Surgical/medical masks are more effective than a plain cloth mask.
  2. If a suitable sized respirator-type P2 mask is available and fits well, this type of mask is preferable over a poorly fitting medical mask. In general, an N95/P2 mask with a good fit is better than a medical mask.
  3. The concept is to keep the face and nose covered in a way that allows for breathing but does not allow fluid particles from sneezes or coughs to escape. Any mask with ear loops tight enough to keep it on a child’s face, should be fine.
  4. A child/student should take at least two masks to school each day. If one mask gets soiled or wet, it is important to change that mask. A zip lock plastic bag is generally better than a paper bag to store new and used masks.
  5. Dispose of surgical masks once worn. If that is not possible, then wash in a washing machine (cold or warm wash) and properly air dry before they are worn again.
  6. Respirator masks can be reused up to five times, but set them aside for a few days, before wearing them again. Dry them in the sun to help get rid of allergens, and put them aside for about 48 hours before re-using.

Previous Post

A golden age: The Stamp Exchange

Next Post

In the details

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *