What masks and why mask now??
Have you noticed that when everybody took off their masks, many people came down with all kinds of illnesses? Flu, gastroenteritis (stomach flu), colds, and other viral diseases were surprisingly rare when everybody was masking.
A study released in the Journal of Hospital Medicine, led by researchers from Vanderbilt University Medical Center, found that across 44 children's hospitals, the number of pediatric patients hospitalized for respiratory illnesses was down 62%. Deaths dropped dramatically too, compared with the last 10 years: The number of flu deaths among children was usually between 100 and 200 per year, but only 1 child died from the disease in the U.S. during the 2020-2021 flu season. (1)
Adults weren’t getting sick either. U.S. flu deaths during 2020-2021 flu season was in the hundreds instead of thousands. During the 2018-2019 flu season, which experienced a moderate level of flu activity, an estimated 34,200 Americans died. (1)
Masks help to stop the spread of Covid and other diseases. That’s why in some areas, people are being asked to mask again.
If you’re still in doubt because you know people who wore masks and still caught Covid, please understand that masks work best when the source of infection is covered. People wearing masks who caught Covid mostly catch it from people around them not wearing masks. A harpist wearing a mask caught Covid because the singer she was working with was positive and did not wear a mask while rehearsing and singing. Another student who wore masks religiously caught Covid because masks were no longer required in her school and other children were not wearing masks. Multiple examples abound. That’s why masking needs to be universal — other people need to wear masks so that you are protected.
But after 2 years of being asked to wear masks, many people have mask fatigue. Is there some relief?
Our recommendation remains that people should wear the most comfortable mask they can find that properly covers the nose and mouth. As explained above, the most effective method to stopping the spread is universal covering of the source. Universal masking, even with slightly less efficient cloth masks, is much more effective than having only part of the population wear “high protection” masks.
So please, choose a very comfortable mask which covers your nose and mouth, which allows you to breathe comfortably, which fits you well and not stick to your mouth or nose, nor cause you irritations, nor pull on your ears or slide into your eyes. We strongly recommend you wear Smit Masks.
1) NPR, March 30, 2021. “Should Masking Last Beyond The Pandemic? Flu And Colds Are Down, Spurring A Debate”