The Bexar County Face Mask Order was implemented April 20, 2020. The new mandate states that all residents 10 years or older have a face mask covering in public where it is difficult to keep six feet away from others.
Initially, the Center for Disease Control only recommended people who were ill or who were coming in contact with those who are ill wear a mask. However, recently, the CDC and the World Health Organization have now recommended that all people venturing out wear masks in public. Why this sudden reverse in decision? The simple answer is that we have no way of telling who does or does not have the virus. Many people have the virus and only have a few symptoms but are still actively shedding virus particles. In order to reduce transmission rates, the new recommendation is to wear a mask as a precautionary effort. Of course, we still need to continue washing our hands and maintaining a six-foot distance.
However, experts and scientific studies disagree on many issues regarding masks.
Issues Regarding Masks
- Which masks are the best?
- What’s the best fit for a mask?
- For homemade masks, which materials are useful and which should be avoided?
- Can wearing a contaminated mask cause more harm than good?
Currently, we don’t have definitive answers to these questions, but we do know that wearing a mask can decrease the risk of contracting coronavirus. This is because masks in general, reduce respiratory droplets from spreading through the air. Using something as simple as cloth covering your face can reduce your risk of contracting influenza by a factor of 13.
Now that it is mandatory to wear a mask in public in Bexar county, let’s talk about the do’s and don’ts of facial masks.
- Ensure the material can be easily washed
- Wash your hands before putting the mask on
- Make sure your mask covers your mouth and nose
- When removing your mask, remove it from behind the ears to avoid touching the areas around your mouth
- Wash your hands after removing the mask
- Avoid any gaps between your face and mask
- Avoid touching your mask while wearing it
- Avoid removing your mask from the mouth area
- Avoid using N95 masks that are desperately needed by our health professionals
Everyone should be wearing a mask because the risk of wearing a mask is low and the potential to prevent the spread of disease is high. The quicker we reduce the spread of this disease, the quicker we can resume our normal lives.
Alamo ENT is available to you for in-person and telemedicine appointments. You may request an appointment online at alamoent.com or by calling (210) 545-0404