To Mask or Not to Mask + Guidelines

Dr. Mercola’s July 15, 2020 email included reference to his article Masked Science: Do Masks Protect You From COVID-19?

He summarizes:

  • Experts have been debating the effectiveness of wearing masks to reduce the risk of infection long before COVID-19 came into the picture, including those worn during surgery
  • Data show masks may not lower the risk of contracting the common cold and cloth masks increase the risk for health care workers of getting flu-like illnesses
  • The effectiveness of cloth masks reduced by 20% after being washed and dried four times. Wearing masks increases the potential for headaches and lowers a surgeon’s oxygen level
  • The WHO recommends several strategies to reduce the potential of infecting yourself, including proper handwashing before and after mask removal and replacing the mask as soon as it’s damp

The article includes research evidence for wearing masks and also risks. He concludes with the below:

“If You Wear a Mask Use These Guidelines”

Ultimately, the goal is to reduce transmission of infectious disease, including COVID-19. It’s apparent scientific evidence supporting or debunking face masks is far from conclusive. If you do choose to wear a face mask, here are strategies from the WHO for reducing the potential of infecting yourself:26. (Note: we included the link below, see article for references.)

  • Before putting on a mask, clean your hands with soap and water.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with the mask and make sure there are no gaps between your face and the mask.
  • Avoid touching the mask while using it; if you have to, try to clean your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water before doing so.
  • Replace the mask with a new one as soon as it is damp. Do not reuse single-use masks.
  • To take off the mask: Remove it from behind (do not touch the front of the mask); discard it immediately in a closed bin; and clean your hands with alcohol-based hand rub or soap and water.

Click here to go to the article on

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