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Tips on how to effectively wear masks

Published: Nov. 20, 2020 at 7:10 PM CST
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GRAND ISLAND, Neb. (KSNB) - As the Tri-Cities vote on mask mandates to control case numbers, people will need to wear them correctly to be effective.

The Central District Health Department asked people to leave surgical masks to the healthcare professionals in case of a shortage, and suggests people to use cloth masks with multiple layers instead.

“If you can hold it up to the light and see through it that’s not a good sign. If it has a weave in it and open weave that’s not good, and if its a mask that’s so tight and so full of layers that you can’t breathe that’s not good because you’re not going to wear it,” said Central District Health Department Director Teresa Anderson.

In order for masks to be effective they need to fit snug on the face and fully cover the nose, mouth, and chin without any gaps. If people wear glasses they need to pinch the nose to keep them from fogging up.

People should not wear their masks with their nose or mouths exposed, because this is not protecting them from the virus droplets that may be floating in the air.

“What the mask does is prevent the virus particles from coming out, and also from coming in for another individual,” Anderson said. “So wearing the masks the proper way is the best way to prevent yourself from getting sick, and also to prevent someone else from getting your germs.”

Cloth masks should be washed often or if worn over eight hours daily. People can either hang the masks or throw them in the dryer. Although, they believe the heat from the dryer will sanitize the masks better.

The department said people should use hand sanitizer every time they put their mask on or off.

“If you take your mask off for eating or whatever purpose, put it in a safe place like in your purse or in your bag, or in your lap even, so your not setting it on a surface that might be contaminated,” Anderson said.

If people need take a break from their mask. They can take it off when they’re alone in a room, but if they’re around other people in a confined space, they must step outside to do it and stand six feet away from others.

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