CDC Face mask recommendation: how to easily make yours with everyday products

Latin America

Chivis Martinez Borderland Beat

To mask or not to mask…that has been the big exasperating question!

Mexico is encouraging citizens to create their own masks
Street vendors replace usual offerings with masks and related CV safety items

Face Masks: It has been frustrating and confusing to wait as the expert’s battle it out regarding face masks. In the last week in particular those of us who carefully follow the daily task force conferences, have been promised a definitive answer.  Yesterday CDC announced the recommendation we cover our faces when out and about.

Strangely enough the reason they give is the same complaint my assistant has been telling me; in the market, people are not abiding by the social distancing rule.  I was thinking, “well yes, how can they?”.  A couple of weeks ago, she began wearing a cloth mask she wears while shopping and conducting errands.
CDC recommends not using the N95 or surgical masks, as they are not needed. Masks are difficult to find anyway.    CDC also explains that wearing a mask doesn’t protect the wearer, but the recommendation is driven by the number of asymptomatic persons, who are very contagious, are mingling with the public and spreading “droplets” even while speaking and infecting others.  It is those situations that are targeted.  The virus is spread by droplets, from seeing, coughing even breathing.

Remember: this is optional not mandatory.  If you have asthma or lung issues you may find that you have difficulties breathing in the mask.  In that case you may want to try the coffee filter or paper towel masks, easy to make, I made one in one minute, and does not restrict breathing.

Drs and scientists have been reluctant to recommend this action.  The white house has been pushing for the mask recommendation.  To me it just makes sense, and I find it difficult to believe it doesn’t help all those who wear a mask, asymptomatic or not, I am a pragmatic, logical person…it simply makes sense.
Below is information from CDC and instructions in making various types of masks.

Recommendation Regarding the Use of Cloth Face Coverings, Especially  in Areas of Significant Community-Based Transmission
Use of Cloth Face Coverings to Help Slow the Spread of COVID-19
CDC continues to study the spread and effects of the novel coronavirus across the United States.  We now know from recent studies that a significant portion of individuals with coronavirus lack symptoms (“asymptomatic”) and that even those who eventually develop symptoms (“pre-symptomatic”) can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms.  This means that the virus can spread between people interacting in close proximity—for example, speaking, coughing, or sneezing—even if those people are not exhibiting symptoms.  In light of this new evidence, CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies) especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.
It is critical to emphasize that maintaining 6-feet social distancing remains important to slowing the spread of the virus.  CDC is additionally advising the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.  Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.
The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators.  Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.
This recommendation complements and does not replace the President’s Coronavirus Guidelines for America, 30 Days to Slow the Spreadexternal icon, which remains the cornerstone of our national effort to slow the spread of the coronavirus.  CDC will make additional recommendations as the evidence regarding appropriate public health measures continues to develop.
How to Wear Face Cover:
Applying a face mask – step 1
Face coverings should—fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face be secured with ties or ear loops include multiple layers of fabric allow for breathing without restriction be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape.
CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission.
CDC also advises the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.  Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.
Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators.  Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.
Should cloth face coverings be washed or otherwise cleaned regularly? How regularly?
Yes. They should be routinely washed depending on the frequency of use.
How does one safely sterilize/clean a cloth face cover?
A washing machine should suffice in properly washing a face covering.
How does one safely remove a used face cover?
Individuals should be careful not to touch their eyes, nose, and mouth when removing their face covering and wash hands immediately after removing.
 Sew and No Sew Instructions
  • Sewn Face Cover
  • Quick Cut T-shirt Face Cover (no sew method)
  • Bandanna Face Cover (no sew method)
  • Coffee Filter method (getting hard to find)
Video Tutorials how to make your own:

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