The uproar of COVID-19 has undoubtedly left us all wondering what the best way to keep safe is. With many methods and tools utilised during this time, it’s important to find the best way to stop the spread of the virus. Amidst the controversy, face masks have been one of the most useful measures that have helped to control the spread of community transmission. This article will explain several key points that relate to the use of masks such as when you should wear them, the pros of wearing them, evidence surrounding them, and what masks are recommended by the professionals. So, keep reading to find out if P2 COVID-19 masks are as good as everyone’s saying!
The pros of wearing a mask
Before deciding whether a mask is right for you, it’s important to assess your lifestyle. If you find yourself in regular situations where physical distancing is hard to maintain, then a face mask is pertinent to your safety. For example, you should wear a mask if you are someone who needs to continue to catch public transport. Depending on where you live, it is important to comply with any state-mandated laws.
Put it in simple terms, you should be wearing a mask whenever you are out in public where social distancing is unlikely.
Many pros come with wearing a mask, to sum up, here’s a shortlist that reflects these benefits:
- Cloth and surgical masks help stop germs from spreading when people cough or sneeze
- Prevents spreading the COVID-19 virus to others
- Prevents the spread of a person’s asymptomatic droplets
- The filtering capability of P2 surgical masks protects the person wearing them because 95% of particles and droplets are left in the mask.
With this in mind, it’s most important to weigh up whether you will be in public places often and if a face mask is best for you.
The science behind the mask
Since the COVID-19 pandemic began, there has been a lot of controversy surrounding the face mask and concerns about the quality and effectiveness of them. What has been proven is that masks are not only effective, but there is also scientific evidence behind them. This evidence explains why both the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and the World Health Organisation (WHO) now recommend wearing a mask in public places.
Ever since March this year when COVID-19 spread globally, there have been many laboratory tests and studies that conclude various masks are effective at blocking droplets from being exposed to an environment. However, the strongest evidence that supports the use of face masks is epidemiological data. This is essentially research and data obtained through past real-world scenarios and other disease-prevention methods.
With the use of epidemiological data, it’s been proven that the face mask is one of the most highly regarded methods for preventing the spread of viruses such as COVID-19. The CDC and WHO are now recommending the use of face masks in heavily populated areas for these same reasons. The primary reason being that this method slows and reduces transmission from person to person.
What is recommended?
COVID-19 has increased the demand and supply for face masks, and because there are several types of masks out there, we’ve outlined the benefits of them below:
P2 face mask (N95)
P2 face masks, also known as the N95 mask, are one of the most effective in the market, as they can filter out extremely fine particles from the air if it’s worn appropriately. As mentioned earlier, these masks can sift through 95% of particles, which significantly reduces airborne transmission.
Not only are they durable and one of the best in the market, but they are also widely available to purchase from any hardware store.
Maintaining effective protection
Because the COVID-19 pandemic is unreliable at this point in time, it’s pertinent that you know how to maintain effective protection when wearing a mask. Here are three simple steps that will help you do this:
- Always change your mask once it becomes damp.
- Wash your hands thoroughly if you touch a used mask.
- Before removing your mask, wait until you are outside an unhygienic area.
These three steps should also supplement any advice from a medical professional.
P2 mask reviews
The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) is conducting face mask reviews alongside the Australian Register of Therapeutic Goods (ARTG). This is to ensure that all face masks being sold in Australia are up to the standards of what is defined as a medical device. According to the TGA, a regulated brand of face mask is when the manufacturer has labelled, advertised or documented that you can use the mask for:
- Prevention of the transmission of disease, or
- The face mask is suitable for the use in surgical, medical or health services
If the packaging of your face mask neglects to inform the consumer of these two claims, then these are not TGA-regulated.
A product that is approved and TGA-regulated is the Air + Smart P2 Protection mask. This mask is adjustable and has an optional ventilator attachment that keeps it dryer for longer. You can buy the mask online and it’s cheap and easy to use; with the fancy tech add-on.
View this post on Instagram
P2 mask buying guide
Even though buying a face mask is easy enough, here are a few tips that can help you find the right one:
- It’s important to look for AS/NZS 1716:2012 (which, might seem like a jumble of words at this point), but this combination means it is compliant by Australian and New Zealand standards
- Make sure it’s P2 or P3 rated
- A tightening option for the bridge of the nose
- Make sure not to reuse a disposable mask past what they recommend on the packaging
Be sure to compare different masks alongside these guidelines to find the perfect one for you.
Want to learn more?
Here at Oiyo, we’re all about giving you the knowledge and tools to help make money a little less daunting. So if you want to learn more about income protection, there are plenty of useful reads to have a look at. Plus, we cover other types of insurance including life insurance, home insurance, health insurance, and more.
For more COVID related news, check out our article on the real cost of the pandemic.