• Thursday, Jul 02, 2020
  • Last Update : 12:56 pm

A face mask or an oxygen mask?

  • Published at 01:12 am May 16th, 2020
mask
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Take precautions right now

In this current situation of Covid-19, health organizations advise us to wear face masks and wash hands more and more. 

Face masks play a vital role in slowing if not stopping the spread of coronavirus. If someone touches anything which has the stains (or droplets) of Covid-19 and the touches their nose, eyes, or mouth, the virus gets the chance to enter into their body and they get infected. 

Maybe a lot of us, if not all of us, know these things already. Now it is seen that, in many parts of the world along with Bangladesh, people are not wearing masks, thereby exposing themselves to the virus. 

Someone sneezes or coughs near me and if I am not wearing a mask, there is a very high chance that I will get infected by the virus. Now, how does the mask save me? 

If I wear a mask (even if it is made of cloth), the possibility of me getting infected reduces to a very low percentage, if not 0%. N95 masks provide 95% protection and cloth masks provide the least protection, but yet it is doing something. 

Social distancing, or what I like to call “safe distancing” (because a lot of people don’t understand what social distancing is), provides an extra protection because the virus is unable to travel a certain distance so maintaining safe distance helps preventing the virus from spreading. 

Another thing which comes along with the benefits of wearing a mask is we get a barrier while touching our nose or mouth. We all touch our faces frequently and wearing a mask provides a protection from that, and we touch our faces less than the usual. 

Now, being a privileged individual and having the access to education and also the news media and internet, I know all these and understand the necessity of wearing a mask and maintaining safe distance. But does everyone know this? 

We need to spread this information widely to the mass people and make them aware. According to many experts, this is the new normal and we will have to maintain safe distancing and wear masks for at least one more year as we hope by then the vaccine and cure will be available. 

But that’s another discussion -- about how fast we can vaccinate the mass people. But till then, we will need to maintain safe distancing, wear masks, wash hands, maintain hygiene, and make people aware. 

So let’s put a question out there for the mass people -- which one would you like to wear, a face mask or an oxygen mask? 

Shah Md Akib Majumder is a freelance contributor.

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