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Health Experts Recommend Wearing Double-Layer Face Masks for New COVID-19 Variants

Senin, 21-Juni-2021 22:00

illustration: medical face mask
Foto : Pixabay/leo2014
illustration: medical face mask

JAKARTA, NETRALNEWS.COM - Health experts have recommended using double-layer masks to ward off the new COVID-19 coronavirus variants that are more contagious.

Half of the experts argue that it is better for people to wear a double layer surgery mask or a cloth mask after the N95 mask is properly used.

Chairperson of PB IDI Dr. Muhammad Adib Khumaidi does not recommend using cloth mask due to its filtration unavailability.

"We do not recommend the use of cloth masks because they do not have the filter function. We have to see the condition of the place where we are in. For health workers, N95 masks are recommended. However, it is prohibited for long-term use," Adib said.

Adib reminded not to wear surgery masks or N95 masks for more than 4 to 5 hours because its function might decrease over time.

A face mask blocks saliva particles that come out from our mouth and nose, as the particles might carry SARS-CoV-2 virus from one person to another, and that is why wearing a mask helps us stop the spreading of the coronavirus.

From the protection side, N95 is known to be better at blocking at least 95 percent of particles in the air, including particles with three tenths of a micron in diameter, according to Scientific American.

A cloth mask protects people by preventing the particles from dissolving with air and by stopping the droplets from the air from entering our nose and mouth.

A surgery mask can block lesser small particles, but it has more protection for its user than a one-layer cloth mask, according to a research in The Lancet journal in June 2020.

In addition, Prof. Dr. Ridwan Amiruddin, Chairperson of the Indonesian Public Health Union and epidemiologist of Universitas Hasanuddin, said that in theory, wearing a three-layer cloth mask (with a high level of yarn density) is not wrong.

In several cases, this high-quality mask can drain almost 50 percent of fine particles one micron in diameter. Coronavirus is one micron big and it can be carried in an aerosol which is smaller than five microns and bigger droplets.

For public citizens, using a cloth mask on top of a surgery mask is the best choice, according to Popular Science.

Scott Segal from Thomas H. Irving Professor and Chair Department of Anesthesiology in Wake Forest Baptist Health, Winston-Salem, North Carolina, as quoted in Health, said the idea of wearing two masks may work if the filtration ability of one of the masks is not too strong.

Reporter : turkhan
Editor : turkhan

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