GROW: The Book
I haven't been wearing one, nd have no intention of doing so. I do put a bandana round my neck and pull it over my mouth and nose if I have to enter somewhere that requests wearing a mask. But, social distancing is exceedingly easy for me, given my lifestyle and where I live. What I do notice when I put on a face covering is that my breathing feels "stuffy", like I can't get a breath of fresh air. It also makes me feel somewhat withdrawn, cut off from the world around me. So, for psychological reasons alone, it does not feel healthy for me to wear one. Some people will have to because of their job or living situation, or if they get sick. But, I do not intend to comply beyond what courtesy demands.
As with most things there are two sides to this issue. Yes, there does seem to be health risks related to wearing masks but for many, there is no other option. N95's are quite restrictive as to freedom of breathing, at least to me, but I know many others who feel the same way. However, N95s are only recommended for health care providers, first responders or other persons who might have a higher risk for coming in contact with an infected patient. Everyone else is advised to use a non-surgical mask which are a bit easier to breathe through.
In my area, there seems to be about 30% of people wearing masks (not including front line workers). For some, I would imagine it is allaying their fears somewhat and helping to keep the virus form spreading if they should happen to be infected but asymptomatic. But on the other hand I have seen people getting too close just because of the false sense of security that wearing a mask seems to be giving. I have seen people not wearing masks properly or touching their faces constantly to readjust a mask or moving it up and down when having a conversation. You might as well not wear a mask if you are going to do any of those things.
Like @judsoncarroll4, I have a bandana (actually, a whole collection) which I wear for going into stores or businesses where it is mandatory and a ziploc baggie full of nitrile gloves. It is very difficult with each business having its own rules about what to do and what not to do. There seems to be very little consistency, at least in my area.
@judsoncarroll4 I haven't worn one either. My kids have to wear them at work. Several kids have passed out wearing them where my youngest works. She has bought a mask that she can breath through b/c of that.
At the risk of being reported for abuse again - on CNBC today they played a video from the WHO of Dr. Maria Van Kerkhove who said that looking at the data from countries that are doing serious contract tracing they have found that asymptomatic spread is very rare. So I wonder what that means for wearing masks one way or the other? There is a video but I won't post it. You guys can look it up.
No worries, @kbmbillups1 . Dr. Fauci and Birx have both said recently that masks were unnecessary and so has the CDC. Now, they say they are essential.... Some medical experts say they are good, some say they are harmful. I think we can all hold varying positions on this one. The only issues arise when folks express their opinion as fact ... indisputable fact... and start arguing with those who disagree. We mods rarely weigh in on one side or the other, only closing a discussion when things are getting out of hand or are heading that way. You may have noticed that a couple of folks on both sides are no longer with us.. basically, they are the ones who demanded that we take sides and were rude to other people. If I'm wrong, I'll defer to @LaurieLovesLearning
My sister just went back to work and masks are required. They were given a mask that is polyester on the outside and cotton on the inside. She is reporting that the workers are complaining about headaches and they are sweating so much in the masks that the masks are becoming soaked by the end of the day.
I told her that the headaches were probably caused by lack of oxygen and all of them should be trying to vent the masks periodically.
@shllnzl If your sister can buy her own mask for work tell her to check out Plato's Closet. I'm sure you can buy breathable masks other places but that's where my daughter bought hers. She really likes it. She can breath now and isn't getting yelled at by costumers for sticking her nose out to take a breath every once in a while.
@kbmbillups1 Thanks for the suggestion, but my sister has to use the company provided one so everyone looks the same.
@judsoncarroll4 You gave a good explanation. Thanks.
@kbmbillups1 There is no issue with your post. Judson explained how we mods work very well. Sometimes it is a difficult task to navigate, but we are trying our best with what we observe. These are very unique times as well, so everyone is treating on new & charged ground, making the job more complicated than normal.
I can't imagine wearing a mask because it was required...oh wait...I can. I would definitely have to look for other work. I can't wear a mask for reasons I have stated in another thread. To make those mandatory is not thinking of those/considerate of with existing medical/psychological issues. If I didn't have those issues & could be able to have something over my face & still be able to breathe, I would have no issue doing so if it made the other person more comfortable. I would do it out of respect for the other person's mental well being.
The mask wearing information is so conflicting. It is even more interesting that both sides (to wear or not) is coming from authorities, even after so many studies that "prove" both sides.
@LaurieLovesLearning, I definitely see both sides of the issue. We have a high-risk individual in our home, so for us the idea of wearing masks to help protect others is a no-brainer. I do also understand that there are people who cannot wear them for medical reasons, and I have seen (and experienced) non-medical masks seeming to provide a false sense of security. We are so, so, so used to talking to other people from a certain distance that staying farther than that apart often feels like a Herculean effort involving continual mental effort and backwards movement.
But, as someone living with a high-risk individual, I just want to say thank-you to everyone who is both able to wear a mask and choosing to do so indoors in public places. It now appears that transmission from asymptomatic individuals is rare, but I guess the thing that concerns me most is the 1-3 day contagious window in people who don't yet know they have it and who do end up having symptoms. And my understanding is that studies and experiments have, indeed, shown that transmission rates from these people (who feel fine that day but who develop COVID-19 symptoms shortly thereafter) can be lessened by masks -- even by non-medical ones.
Has anyone tried a face shield? I was researching them and they may provide an answer for some. The appear to be as useful as a cloth face mask as long as proper distancing is practiced plus they provide some eye protection as well. If you are going to be in a situation distancing isn't possible you can wear a mask behind it, which appears to provide better protection than either one alone. They are reusable and can be sanitized fairly easily. Anyway I thought I would throw that in here.
I did buy a few face shields, but have not tried it yet. I was talking to my dear friend and Acupuncturist Chinese Medicine friend and we both agreed that the masks provide psychological benefit for some. It is clear among people who understand viruses that a mask will not prevent the spread of viruses just a a chain link fence will not prevent peanuts going through it. As a health coach, I have been trying hard to focus on spreading information about immunity through so many ways. I do use my elderberry syrup that I made from Majorie's kit. I love it. I also focus on good nutrition, sleep, lots of time outside in the sunshine-- easy to do since I live in Florida. I am a yoga teacher, so I practice yoga and breathing and meditation nearly daily. I only wear a mask when it is being required and avoiding close contact with people has gotten easier since I have put more of my classes online and the few I am teaching in person are either outside or in places that are monitoring people very carefully. We have so much to learn about health and I am hopefully that the good thing that will come out of COVID19 will be more people exploring the herbal ways of staying healthy.
@andrea745 Welcome to the TGN Forum.
I think face shields are more about protecting doctors, nurses and other practitioners who may be at risk of larger amounts of body fluids being expelled onto their faces and into mucous membranes. As a First Responder, I think face shields would be too bulky and get in my way for emergency scenes. We have been supplied with them in case we are called to any respiratory illnesses but I think in those situations I would prefer a full N95 or P100 face mask rather than just a shield. We have those as well.
However, I can see them being of use to those individuals who can't, for whatever reasons, wear a mask.
Masks are being required while on our coastal ferry system and now they are talking about mandatory masks on public transit in the bigger cities. Some are even specifying the type of mask you have to wear without any consideration for those who can't wear a mask, particularly of the type specified.
N95 and eye goggles is what I have worn whether in the hospital setting, or in the field..when necessary. That is what was issued to us and they were great protection....and then there was the gentleman, confused pulled his chest tubes out spattering blood everywhere and unpolitely tried to get out through the window...3rd floor....Lucky for him, and us, there were bars on the windows...
"Dr. Fauci and Birx have both said recently that masks were unnecessary and so has the CDC." (stated above)
Respectfully, Dr. Fauci stated “Masks are not 100 percent protective. However, they certainly are better than not wearing a mask,” Fauci said. “Both to prevent you, if you happen to be a person who maybe feels well, but has an asymptomatic infection that you don’t even know about, to prevent you from infecting someone else, but also it can protect you a certain degree, not a hundred percent, in protecting you from getting infected from someone who, either is breathing, or coughing, or sneezing, or singing or whatever it is in which the droplets or the aerosols go out. So masks work.”
“The important thing is actually physical separation,” Fauci emphasized.
It is, if course, up to each person to decide (depending on their state and situation). Respectfully, I wanted to clarify Dr. Fauci's stance. As we learn more about Novel Coronavirus, we can each update our personal decisions per our personal criteria.
Not to split hairs @Acequiamadre , but he has reversed his position:
"There's no reason to be walking around with a mask," infectious disease expert Dr. Anthony Fauci told 60 Minutes.
While masks may block some droplets, Fauci said, they do not provide the level of protection people think they do. Wearing a mask may also have unintended consequences: People who wear masks tend to touch their face more often to adjust them, which can spread germs from their hands.
@judsoncarroll4 The National Review article linked above is from yesterday. The 60 Minutes interview was in March. It's hard to keep track. I mostly stay home, but when I am out around people I wear a mask. I'm not wearing it for that long so it's not a big deal, and it might help keep somebody well. Maybe even me!
Well, like I said, Fauci said that everyone should not wear a mask... now he says they should. He also said that it was perfectly fine to go on cruises early on in the pandemic... and that it was okay to have random sex with strangers met online in the midst of the shutdown. He doesn't have much credibility in my book, especially given his handling of the AIDS epidemic. I'll stick with common sense. But, that is my opinion only; my opinion does not represent anyone other than me and is not mandatory for others to accept.
Unfortunately, masks are the rule in NJ. My girls start at the farm market tomorrow and they have to wear masks, even when out in the field. Masks are not required in parks but they are in you-pick fields. There really isn't any rhyme or reason to this.
I have made so many masks during the past three months. My latest iteration is a small, round mask out of the lightest fabric that I can find. It covers the nose and mouth, which is what is required. I hope no one complains, but I am worried that my kids will pass out in the heat and humidity.
When visiting a large chain hardware/home store I noticed that many of those who were wearing masks were wearing them improperly. It is my opinion that if one decides to wear a mask, it might be a good idea if the wearer actually covered the mouth and nose areas.
@judsoncarroll4 Oh! The inconsistencies are myriad! I think this is a worldwide issue.
@SherryA Unfortunately, it has been determined that the mask does not protect the wearer, but supposedly it can stop droplets coming from the wearer reaching others. That is the idea behind wearing a mask.
My husband has repeatedly pointed out that as much as the N95 is touted as effective, that they are merely dust masks rated for dust inhalation protection and not what they are currently being lauded as. That & valves let the moisture out through an unfiltered opening in some of the masks being worn.
My husband has been previously fitted for a specialized mask/respirator used in asbestos removal and had to go through a course that went over the properties of various masks. He learned about proper fit of masks & particulars, and that there are a few very legitimate reasons that some people cannot wear any mask. At his workplace, there are various situations where particular masks were needed for special jobs. This course was before this craziness of the virus & inconsistent messages. For true virus protection, a more specialized mask is actually needed.
To add, people do touch their face more often with a mask, and most people either wear one that is ill fitting leaving gaps allowing moisture to escape, or don't wear it properly, covering mouth & nose...or lift it often to be able to breathe, then put it back on. @KimWilson, great point.
I do believe it offers a false sense of security to many, just as excessive hand sanitizer when simple soap & water have been proven to be superior. I visited many washrooms promptly upon entering stores yesterday, while shopping, to wash those chemicals off. We avoid those for a few health reasons, but can no longer avoid being told to use them or have it sprayed on our hands. We would no longer have access to most stores if we refused. Hopefully masks never become mandatory here for shoppers. I can't wear them due to claustrophobia. If I had a job that required them, I'd be out of work.
@Gail H I hope your children stay safe. There have been reports of people passing out. This especially concerns me when I see people driving around wearing them.
I, for one, can't wait until this is all over.
The mandatory mask issue is a very sensitive one for all simply because we cannot avoid how this covering makes us feel energetically, psychologically, as well as emotionally and physically. We are experiencing cognitive dissonance then because our survival instincts are communicating one message while the CDC delivers its take.
If we are holistic practitioners, and if when we wear a mask the result is to experience panic or sense of feeling cutoff energetically, this is our nervous systems and innate survival instincts exactly messaging us about what is right for us to do and be (or not).
After serving for several decades as a Yoga therapist and stress management instructor for the Dean Ornish Program, I realized the important benefits of proper breathing. Specifically, in regard to how our oxygenation levels impact our ability to relax, if we are not breathing properly and if we feel cut off or limited through the breathing process, we are adding all sorts of stressors which negatively impact our immune systems and ability to relax. How does one cope then with the mandatory mask? Well, I don’t know, but I’m working on this one like our lives depend on it. I do know from personal testing that a carbon-filtered mask is better than most of the others.
@sunflowerstressrelief I see the mask issue, esp the forced mask issue as DEHUMANIZING...I see people coming toward me in all diff places wearing a mast and all you can see of them is their eyes....even when I know the person/s it is like looking at 'something' and not 'someone'....and this is by design.....
As a high risk person, I am grateful for those who wear masks. I have been off my own property perhaps 4 times since March, but sooner or later a need does arise. I have been extremely diligent in taking precautions, but this virus could literally take me out. Thanks to those who show the extra consideration.
Either way I think the results of the psychological effects are going to be long lasting as @judsoncarroll4 referred to. My daughter had two children in school and one in daycare. Obviously both have been closed for months. She heard from the daycare about the reopening strategies. One Rule being kids over age 2 in masks. So her take is (and she’s a nurse)...she doesn’t feel kids constantly touching their masks to readjust, touching their faces, their eyes is surely not a good way to stop a spread of ANY infection. And her words that brought tears to my eyes, “I can’t imagine my baby (he’s almost 9 months old and ALWAYS smiling unless he’s tired) not seeing anyone smile all day while he’s in daycare “. I can’t help but feel some kind of way as I go through a store and look at people suspiciously because you can’t see their face. Heartbreaking to think about what these effects will have on our young ones with their Growing, impressionable minds.
@maimover These effects are effecting all of us, know it or not...like it or not. The best and only real defense is a strong immune system.
I think we as theis group..TGN...should all put our heads together and 'brainstorm' how we can protect ourselves and those that are immune compromised without degrading ourselves as living interactive human beings. IF we don't it could change who we are for a very long time.
@silvertipgrizz so sad and so very true...
I started back at work this week- I'd been off since March 16. (Actually it was a very nice vacation; the timing was awesome. I never got so much gardening accomplished in my life.) Anyhow, I work at a daycare center. We wear mask when inside, but not outside- we are outside a lot! So far, it really only bothers me when I'm sitting down at nap time. That being said, I don't think what we are doing is all that effective; some of my coworkers don't wear them correctly, and most of us frequently adjust our mask. I do try to sanitize my hands after adjusting my mask, but that isn't always possible.
Children over a certain age(I don't remember!) are encouraged to wear a mask inside; I have yet to see any do so. I think it's fairly pointless for children anyway, other than maybe in certain specific scenarios. They do not keep their hands to themselves no matter what.
I'm not too concerned about getting Covid-19, as it is not too bad in my area. If one of my toddlers is a carrier though, I dare say I will. I am a living kleenex all afternoon.
There is one time of day I love my mask. We are required to spray down our room with bleach water at the end of the day; I do not like this but have no choice in the matter. The mask makes it much more pleasant, however
I'm sorry it makes other people so uneasy, but it doesn't feel degrading to me. Annoying, and at times uncomfortable, but that's it. There are many sides to the issue of course.
I don’t like wearing a mask either it makes me feel like I’m not getting fresh air when I breath. I purchased one imbedded with silver which is supposed to be a bit more effective than other types because even though the virus can pass through the mask, the moisture from your breath is supposed to free up silver ions that are believed to help kill the virus.
For those in the population who are FULLY RECOVERED, wearing a face mask is not needed. Well over 96% of the population can beat this virus. The remaining percentage needs solutions that work for them. Like anything else a treatment plan would be the ideal method. Then the nation can get back to normal much sooner.