Tips and IDEAS

Face Masks 101: Proper Use, Technique and Care

There are numerous ways to lower your risks for illness, including frequent hand washing, hand sanitizer use and avoiding high-touch surfaces in public. Wearing face masks can also provide helpful and even necessary protection against airborne pathogens. However, it’s important to use care and proper technique so masks maintain their effectiveness and durability. When wearing your mask, keep these important tips in mind.

Start With a Proper Fit and Quality Materials

An ill-fitting mask may end up doing more harm than good. If the design is sub-par, the materials can stretch or even tear with minimal use, resulting in inadequate protection. In addition, a poor fit means you’ll be consistently touching your face to make adjustments, which increases your risk for getting sick. Invest in a high-quality product from the start and check for a secure fit before you leave your home.

Wear Your Mask to Protect Both Yourself and Others

Often times, you may choose to wear a mask to protect yourself from exposure to certain diseases. It can be wise to wear one when you’re in contact with anyone outside of your household during periods of increased exposure risk. However, there are times when it may be appropriate to wear your mask to protect others. The elderly, those with preexisting medical conditions and newborn babies are especially vulnerable when it comes to illness, even with something as basic as the common cold. When visiting those with weakened immune systems, wearing a mask can help keep them safe.

Care for Your Masks and Your Skin Properly

Wash your hands every time before putting your mask on and again after removing it. Throw away disposables according to the directions. Clean and check reusable face masks for signs of damage on a regular basis. Wearing a face mask can affect sensitive skin so avoid heavy makeup and dense moisturizers to keep your skin clear. Wash your face often with a gentle cleanser to reduce irritation.

Wearing a face mask can help you maintain good health while also protecting others. With proper use and care, you can lower your risks for illness.

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