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The Dos and Don'ts of Face Masks

  • Category: Coronavirus
  • Posted On:
  • Written By: Baton Rouge General
The Dos and Don'ts of Face Masks

Face masks are required in Louisiana, so that means that anytime you go out you should have one on. Even after wearing your face mask for a while now, you probably still have some logistical questions — and we've got answers.

How do I know if I’m wearing it correctly?

  • Try to fit it snugly against the sides of your face, this will prevent frequent readjusting.
  • Make sure you can breathe easily.
  • Should comfortably fit toward the bridge of your nose.
  • Should fit firmly, but be comfortable against the skin.
  • Do not pull your mask below your chin (exposing your nose and lips) while you're wearing it. Leaving the mask dangling or improperly fitted to your face creates opportunities for exposure.

What are the right steps for putting on a mask and taking it off?

To put on:

  1. Clean your hands by washing with soap and water or using hand sanitizer.
  2. Loop elastic over your ears. Pull it down so that it's covering under your chin. For surgical masks, secure them to your face by pinching the metal piece over your nose. Make sure your cloth mask is sitting flush against the bridge of your nose and cheeks.

To remove:

  1. Before removing the mask, clean your hands.
  2. Remove the mask using the ear loops.
  3. You’ll need to inspect your surgical mask for re-use. If it is wet or very soiled, go ahead and throw it away, then perform hand hygiene. If the surgical mask is dry or only slightly soiled by makeup, it is OK to reuse. Prepare for storage (Next step.)
  4. Fold the mask in half (lengthwise or widthwise), so the outside surfaces are touching each other. Place it carefully into your clean storage area/bag. Masks should be stored in paper bags, NOT plastic. You’ll want to frequently launder your cloth masks, so no need to store those for long periods of time.
  5. Clean your hands.

What is the best way to store my facemask? Can I just throw them in my purse or keep it in my pocket?

Facemasks should be carefully folded so that the outer surface is held inward and against itself to reduce contact with the outer surface during storage. The folded surgical mask can be stored between uses in a clean sealable paper bag. Avoid using plastic bags that create condensation inside the bag. Always store a mask in a clean place, never just throw it in a purse or pocket.

What is the point of wearing a mask? There seems to be so many differing opinions on them.

A face mask is an added layer of protection that can help reduce the spread of COVID-19 in spaces where social distancing is challenging. You wear a cloth or surgical mask to potentially prevent particles containing COVID-19 from escaping your nose and mouth and infecting those around you. Others wear their mask to provide the same level of protection for you. When in a public setting, it's safest to practice both social distancing and wear a face mask.