The mask against corona virus is the weapon you have so the risk of infection is significantly reduced. Therefore, face masks have now been made mandatory in all over the world. If you leave the house then you must have to wear a face mask. But now there is a new question has raised among the people’s mind that is “Does prolonged use of a face masks cause harm?”
Survive on the Surface.
The US National Institute of Health has also done research on the surface on which the corona virus survives for hours or days. According to this research, the corona virus can survive for 72 hours or 3 days on a surface like steel and solid plastic. Also can survive on the cardboard up to 24 hours and up to 4 hours on copper. (2)
However, research at the University of Hong Kong claims that the corona virus can be eliminated from domestic pesticides and soaps. The surfaces on which corona virus infection is feared can be washed with a domestic pesticide.(3)
In addition, research also says that the corona virus can survive even on currency notes. Its survival period on the currency note lasts for 1 day. Apart from those, prolong use of face masks have other several health issues, such as;
Danger of Prolonged Use of a Face Masks.
- Reduce oxygen in the blood.
- Prevent oxygen flow in the brain.
- Prolong use feels you weak.
- May leads to death.
Reduce Oxygen in the Blood.
According to the several studies it has proved that wearing masks for a long time leads to lack of oxygen in the body and increases the amount of carbon dioxide. (4)
The National Institutes of Health says that in many cases, the use of masks for a long time can be dangerous. According to the Health Institute, breathing at high levels of carbon dioxide can be fatal. Hypercapnia present in carbon dioxide can cause problems such as headache, dizziness, difficulty in viewing, difficulty in focusing and ear hearing attacks. (5), (6)
Why There is Trouble?
Carbon dioxide is usually 0.03 per cent in the atmosphere, but if the same amount is 10 per cent or more, it can be fatal. When you wear a mask, the process of breathing and quitting continues. In the meantime, the flow of oxygen is low due to masks and amount of carbon dioxide increased. Because the breath you exhale is stays little longer in the mask.
In this way, you are taking the carbon dioxide with oxygen. CO2 controls the pH of blood. Blood becomes very acidic due to more CO2. As the blood becomes acidic, the body demands more oxygen. However, due to lack of oxygen several health issues like seizures may occur.
How to Use a Face Mask?
N95 masks are essential for health care workers, but don’t wear it for a long time, if you’re using it. N95 mask should not be wear while running or walking fast. Do not leave the house without masks but do not wear excessive tight mask.
Prefer Homemade Masks.
Homemade masks are much better, as they do not have shortness of breath. Cotton cloth should be used to make masks at home.
If there is difficulty in breathing after wearing a mask, take off the mask and relax in a safe place. As well as consult with your doctor. (7)
Choose the Right One.
The masks are now coming in many forms. There are many things to be noted when wearing a mask. First, quality. You need to look at this kind of thing.
Don’t look for wealth here. Buy the surgical mask. It should be purchased in blue, white or green colours. Wear blue or green parts to draw outwards and inwards.(8)
Jogging With a Face Mask.
There were reports of a lung damage to a young Chinese man who had gone jogging with a face mask. Although the mask protects us from the corona, but it prevents free flow of oxygen in the body.
Mask for No Reason.
It is said that running or exercising with a mask is not beneficial for the health. Because our body needs more oxygen when exercising. When wearing a mask, natural oxygen is also interrupted. This also causes lung damage. Especially for those who are suffering from asthma and heart disease. Hence, it is better to avoid mask during exercise. But we must take precautions against the corona.
Some People Have Counted More Security.
Some people have bought and used masks, which are for health workers. This make it more dangerous, Mainly if you do not exercise at all. The N95 mask is for health workers. It is not necessary for ordinary people to buy and use it. (13)
It is a very tight and cannot be kept for long time. This can cause lung problems. Especially for patients with lung problems. No need for such a mask for normal people.
Children Under Two Years of Age.
Similarly, Japanese pediatricians have warned that the use of such masks can harm children under two years of age. Studies have shown that breathing difficulties can harm the respiratory system in babies.
Lung damage can affect the heart. (14)
Maintain Proper Hygiene.
Clean your hands before and after wearing masks. For this, you can use a sanitizer or soap containing alcohol. Wash your hands for 20 seconds. Place the metallic part of the mask over the nose, mouth and tie the lace behind the back. (15)
Do not touch the mask while in use. Especially in the front. That is, the mouth and nose covered. Untie the lace and remove it without touching it.
Skin Problems Due to Prolonged Use of a Face Masks.
People are locked in their homes because of the spreading infection of the corona virus. If there is any reason to getting out, people are definitely putting face masks. However, there may be many skin related problems due to long time use of face mask. (16), (17)
Applying face masks constantly keeps sweating on the face and also rub the skin continuously. So, here we will tell you about the skin problems arising due to prolonged use face masks and the remedies.
Problems With Face Masks.
People who prolonged use a face masks and have more sweat on their faces they may face several problems. The person may have a problem of bacterial infection. In addition, some people have problems of itching, rashes, acne, dermatitis and roughness due to the cloth of face mask. (18)
N95 Face Mask May Also Cause Problems.
Polypropylene is used to make N95 masks. Polypropylene is a fabric which is not weaved. N95 masks have 4 layers.
The inner layer of this mask that comes directly in contact with the mouth. Even though polypropylene is considered safe for the skin, it can cause problems in many cases.
A research have also revealed that the corona-protecting mask is proving to be a major cause of corona infection.
How to Keep the Skin Safe While Wearing Masks?
Problems can be avoided if a good moisturizer is applied to the face before applying masks. Applying moisturizer locks the moisture of the skin and closes the skin pores due to oil, thereby reduce the formation of sebum. It also reduces the problem of nail-acne.
Also to avoid bacterial infection, maintaining social distance would be better instead of applying face masks. If you are forced to wear masks, you keep changing your mask in 6-8 hours and keep cleaning the sweat of the face.
Choose a Right Moisturizer.
Use Simple Cloth Masks.
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says medicated masks are use and throw. They cannot be used daily and continuously. While people are constantly using the same masks. The infection is set to spread.
The US center says, people who use messy masks may be a victims of infection. People who do not have symptoms of infection can use ordinary clothe mask while going out.
- Pull it off when you are alone. (Lot of people in the car with AC still wearing face mask).
- Don’t use it at home.
- Use it only in a crowded place and when in close contact with one or more person.
- Reduce the habit of it while isolating yourself most of the times.
In this current situation it is important to use the face mask in a positive way. As prolonged use of a face masks may leads to several health problems. It is always recommended to prefer social distance as well as take precautions to avoid this virus.
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- Stability of SARS-CoV-2 in different environmental conditions; https://www.thelancet.com/journals/lanmic/article/PIIS2666-5247(20)30003-3/fulltext
- Study suggests new coronavirus may remain on surfaces for days; https://www.nih.gov/news-events/nih-research-matters/study-suggests-new-coronavirus-may-remain-surfaces-days
- Coronavirus can stay on face masks for up to a week, study finds; https://www.scmp.com/news/china/science/article/3078511/coronavirus-can-remain-face-masks-week-study-finds
- Fact Check: Can prolonged use of masks cause oxygen deficiency and fatigue?; https://www.indiatoday.in/fact-check/story/fact-check-can-prolonged-use-of-masks-cause-oxygen-deficiency-and-fatigue-1676405-2020-05-10
- Does Wearing A Face Mask Reduce Oxygen Supply? We Tell You The Truth; https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/health-news/does-wearing-a-face-mask-reduce-oxygen-in-the-body-we-tell-you-the-truth/photostory/76089083.cms
- Use Masks to Slow the Spread of COVID-19; https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html
- Coronavirus disease (COVID-19) advice for the public: When and how to use masks; https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019/advice-for-public/when-and-how-to-use-masks
- Man, 26, suffers collapsed lung after jogging 2.5 miles while wearing face mask; https://www.mirror.co.uk/news/world-news/man-26-suffers-collapsed-lung-22018788
- Jogger’s lungs collapsed after running with facemask. Here is why you should avoid working out with masks; https://timesofindia.indiatimes.com/life-style/health-fitness/health-news/joggers-lungs-collapsed-after-running-with-facemask-here-is-why-you-should-avoid-working-out-with-masks/photostory/75860611.cms
- Face masks can be dangerous for children under the age of two, says the Japan Pediatric Association; https://www.thehindubusinessline.com/news/science/face-masks-can-be-dangerous-for-children-under-the-age-of-two-says-the-japan-pediatric-association/article31677619.ece
- Use and Care of a Cloth Mask; https://www.nationaljewish.org/patients-visitors/patient-info/important-updates/coronavirus-information-and-resources/about-coronavirus-covid-19/additional-information/making-masks-for-health-care-workers/use-and-care-of-a-cloth-mask
- Increased Face Mask Wear Can Lead To Skin Irritation And Damage — Here’s Why And How To Mitigate Risk; https://www.forbes.com/sites/allisongasparini/2020/04/08/increased-face-mask-wear-can-lead-to-skin-irritation-and-damage—heres-why-and-how-to-mitigate-risk/?sh=5ee9bc362a4d
- Do these 5 things to protect your skin from the downsides of face masks, doctors say; https://www.cnbc.com/2020/05/13/rash-irritation-downsides-face-masks-how-to-protect-skin-according-to-doctors.html
- How to Deal With Irritation from Face Masks and Coverings; https://www.verywellhealth.com/face-mask-skin-irritation-4843754