The COVID-19 pandemic has created history with so many nations and millions of people affected, with the numbers of infected seeing no decline. COVID-19 is a disease caused by a coronavirus. Any person infected with the virus experiences respiratory problems like cough, fever, difficulty in breathing, loss of taste and smell, etc. The virus is said to have originated in China and has infected almost 7 million people worldwide. The recovery rate is fairly well and older people or people with a weak immune system due to any reason are more prone to deaths.
As of now, there is no vaccine to curb the spread of the virus. Some of the ways in which the virus can be stopped from spreading are keeping a distance from people and avoiding physical contact with them, washing hands from time to time, keeping your surroundings clean, not touching mouth or eyes without washing hands, and wearing masks and gloves when around people.
How do masks help?
There are various types of masks like simple cloth masks, surgical masks generally used by doctors, N95 masks, etc. The cloth masks are more popular because they can be made at home with scrap cotton fabric, are reusable (they can be washed after use), and are much cheaper than the other varieties. These masks have proven to be effective against the virus.
The basic purpose behind wearing a mask is that it minimizes the transmission of the virus through talking, coughing, sneezing, etc. The virus is spread through droplets released during respiratory activities like talking, sneezing, coughing, etc. These droplets are not large enough to penetrate the mask, so the virus stays out.
There is always a chance that these droplets fall on surfaces, which are then touched by someone. To avoid this scenario, it is recommended that people should not touch their mouths or eyes without washing hands.
How to make masks?
There are numerous tutorials on the Internet as well as in newspapers on how to make masks. Many people having sewing machines and scrap fabrics have made masks in bulk and distributed them for free. If you make your own mask, make sure it is a clean cotton fabric that allows you to breathe. The mask should cover the nose and the mouth.
If you are purchasing the mask or getting it for free, wash it before use. The masks can be washed by hand or even in a washing machine. Make sure you have at least two masks per person if you are frequently going out. You may remove the mask when you are at home if no one is experiencing respiratory problems at your home. However, if you are outside, never remove the mask.