With the Covid-19 epidemic upon us and its end nowhere in sight, there’s a good chance that you probably have a face mask on or are going to wear one if you leave your house.
However, at the start of the pandemic, face mask use was not recommended by health authorities so what changed?
During the early stages of the coronavirus breakout, experts had very little information regarding how the virus spread from person to person. The fact that some people could be carriers of the coronavirus and yet show no symptoms was also unclear.
These discoveries prompted public health groups to recommend that people start wearing face masks, and KN95 mask Canada, when out in public in a bid to curb the spread of the virus. Unfortunately, this has been met with intense resistance from a lot of people. A study conducted by Angus Reid found that 45% of Canadians do not wear face masks in public.
Social scientists have been quick to point out that culturally, Canadians were not acclimatized to using face masks as compared to Asian countries where wearing face masks in public is common practice. Perhaps what these people fail to understand is that face masks were used widely even before the onset of Covid-19.
To help break down the possible stigma revolving around the use of face masks, here are 7 ways people use them in their day to day life.
Awesome Ways People Use Face Masks Everyday
In Medical Care Provision
If there’s an area that you’d have indubitably witnessed the use of face masks, it’s the medical field. You’ve probably been to a hospital and seen doctors and nurses with masks over their mouths and noses. If not, you’ve probably seen them on TV.
Medical professionals use disposable face masks for various reasons depending on their field of specialty. For instance, surgeons use face masks as well as other forms of personal protective equipment (PPE) when performing surgeries to prevent them from coming in to contact with sudden splashes.
Doctors and nurses involved in the physical diagnosis of someone who may potentially be carrying airborne pathogens also use face masks. The health care provider may also be carrying a contagious disease like the flu and as such, will use a face mask to avoid the patient from getting infected.
Giving a house a fresh lick of paint can be fun but also a risky affair if the one doing the painting does not take the necessary precautions.
Certain projects usually involve exposing oneself to harmful chemicals and toxins such as adhesives, solvents, and paint fumes. At times, the painter will have to sand off old paint that can release harmful particles into the air that pose a health risk when inhaled.
Lungs are not made to filter out urethane, aerosols, or epoxy fumes. Therefore, professional painters usually wear a face mask as a precaution to protect themselves against such risks.
Construction workers such as masons, carpenters, and any other person working in a field that causes immense dust and debris to fill the air use face masks as a means of preventing them from inhaling potentially harmful particles.
For example, masons who are involved in the mixing of cement may have a lot of cement dust floating about that they will most definitely not want to breathe. Construction workers involved in demolition work will also need to wear a face mask because of the dusty nature of such projects.
Carpenters doing wood-cutting may have a lot of sawdust in the air around them. Plumbers involved in piping repairs may find the fumes emitted by the piping system too noxious for them to take.
When a disaster occurs, first responders go straight to the heart of what’s happening to either save the lives of people who might be trapped or to quell the source of the danger. For instance, if it’s a fire that’s the problem, firefighters will have to wear disposable face masks to help them avoid inhaling smoke.
Emergency medical technicians (EMTs) also need disposable face masks because of the nature of work. For example, if a house collapses, they may have to find a way inside the ruins which will have a lot of dust and debris just to attend to anyone who might be inside and is in urgent need of medical attention.
Hazardous Material Removal
If you were not aware, there are people who are trained in the removal of hazardous material. They are usually referred to as hazmat workers. These people are involved in the removal, transportation, and disposal of nuclear waste, radioactive waste, and any other dangerous materials that pose a health risk to the environment or general public.
To do their job efficiently, hazmat workers usually wear protective suits with respiratory face masks that cover their noses and mouths. This allows them to breathe safely without inhaling toxic fumes from the hazardous material.
In the Dentistry Field
Another profession that requires the use of face masks is dentistry. For dentists to treat a patient’s teeth and gum problems, they require the patient to have their mouth wide open. However, in such a situation, if the patient has an airborne disease, it is easy for the dentist to get infected since their face will be in close proximity to the nose and mouth of the patient.
To protect themselves, dentists use multi-layered face masks to create a thick barrier between them and the oral respiratory activity of the patient.
Surgical, N95 and KN95 Masks: Canada’s Fight Against Covid-19
The Coronavirus has made face mask use a common feature among Canadians today. Because the virus primarily spreads through oral droplets, people use face masks to cover their mouths and noses from exhaling and inhaling pathogens that cause Covid-19.
With a vaccine not looking feasible in the near future, face masks are Canada’s best bet against the spread of the virus.
Face Masks Are an Important Part of PPE
Before early this year, not a lot of people were familiar with the acronym PPE apart from first responders, healthcare, and industrial workers because they use them every day. Now it has become a common term across the country.
With the urgent need for quality surgical masks, N95, and KN95 masks, Canada is working hard to ensure stores are fully stocked with face masks to reduce the spread of the virus but some people still haven’t warmed up to the idea.
Hopefully, the information highlighted above should ease the fears of Canadians to be more accepting of using face masks when out in public.