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Guidelines and precautions to wear a mask

This post is also available in: हिन्दी (Hindi)

What are the international guidelines set regarding its use in the present coronavirus epidemic situation?

World Health Organisation(WHO) has formed a clear set of guidelines in order to ensure people’s safety and the availability of goods for medical health professionals.

Wearing masks, people lined up for temperature checks before entering the mall 、Starbacks and hotel in Chengdu,China

• The general public can wear a surgical three ply mask or a use cloth as a masks for there personal protection.

• A person who is sneezing or coughing is advised to wear a mask.

• One who uses a mask should know how to dispose of it carefully.

• One of the most important steps before wearing a mask is to wash hands with soap and water or with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. It is only effective to wear a mask if paired with regular washing of hands.

• Ensure the mask covers the nose and mouth fully and that there are no leakages.

• Avoid contact with the mask once it’s in place, as it might get contaminated. If one touches the mask, it is necessary to wash ones’ hands using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

• Single-use masks should not be used more than once and are supposed to discard in case they get damp or moist.

• Once removed, it should be safely discarded in a closed bin, and it is necessary to rewash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based sanitizer.

All the guidelines mentioned above are available on the World Health Organisation (WHO) website, and people are advised to follow the same for personal safety as well as for others safety.

What are the precautions associated with its use?

Precautionary measures are in place to ensure the safety and complete functionality of the product being used. Some basic precautions while using a mask, are listed below.

• First and foremost, as mentioned before, basic hand hygiene should be followed. As the hand comes in contact with most of the surfaces, it is most likely to transmit the virus. Hands should always be washed before and after coming in contact with a surface or touching the mask. Soap and water is considered the best when it comes to washing hands, as it kills most of the viruses and bacteria before it enters the body. In case of the absence of water, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer can be used.

• When buying the mask, make sure they are of good quality, made from appropriate materials, and are from a certified company. Also, remember to check the fitting before buying one.

• Before placing the mask, it should be inspected for a tear or holes.

• While wearing the mask, one thing to keep in mind is that the mask should completely cover the wearer’s face, from their nose to their mouth, without any leak from the sides.

• Always refrain from touching your face or the mask once it is in place as it provides better chances of transmission.

• Once used, carefully remove the mask from behind, without touching the front side and dispose of it carefully and immediately in a closed bin.

• Do not use a single- use mask more than once for safety reasons.

Although it is not necessary for a person without symptoms to wear the mask, one can use a mask for themselves. If a cover is being used, please ensure proper disposal as it may lead to the spread of infection in case of a failure to do so.

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