How to get the most out of wearing a mask

Published: Dec. 21, 2020 at 9:46 AM CST
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SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (Dakota News Now) - Dr. Santiago Lopez is a pediatric infectious disease physician with Sanford Health. He said the most effective mask to wear is the N95 mask to help reduce the spread of COVID-19. Right now, they are hard to find because they’re in such high demand in the medical field. Dr. Lopez said there are still other masks that are effective, like reusable cloth ones and non-surgical disposable masks. He said the most important thing is to make sure the mask has two layers.

The neck gaiters usually don’t have two layers, but Dr. Lopez said more companies are making them with two layers so they’re effective at reducing the spread of COVID-19. One mask he said people shouldn’t be using is the one with an exhalation valve. It may protect the person wearing it, but that person can be spreading the virus to others through the valve.

“The mask is a low-tech and pretty safe measurement. It’s not perfect, 100% bulletproof, but it’s a low-tech, excellent tool that we have to prevent the spread of the virus and to prevent us from being infected,” Dr. Lopez said.

In the videos in this article, Dr. Lopez goes over how we should be removing our masks, how often we should be switching them out, and whether we should be taking them off when we sneeze or cough.

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