Dean Wallace, Derbyshire’s Director of Public Health, has raised concerns about the number of people choosing not to wear a mask or wearing them incorrectly.
He says covering up, along with regular hand-washing and social distancing, is one of the key things people can do to help stop the spread of coronavirus and has stepped up to debunk some of the common mask-wearing myths:
MYTH: Masks are dangerous because they limit your oxygen levels. This is not true.
TRUTH: Most common types of protective mask, such as surgical masks and cloth masks, will not interfere with oxygen levels and are safe to use.
MYTH: It’s ok to remove your mask to speak. This is not true.
TRUTH: You must keep your mouth and nose covered to prevent tiny droplets that are released when you speak, sneeze, or talk from being inhaled by others. This is how the virus passes from person to person.
MYTH: You only need to wear a face covering if you have symptoms. This is not true.
TRUTH: You could be carrying coronavirus even if you haven’t got any symptoms and covering up means you’re less likely to pass it on.
MYTH: You only need to cover your mouth not your nose. This is not true.
TRUTH: It is really important that your face covering goes over your nose as well as your mouth to protect you from inhaling tiny airborne droplets from people who are infected – and to prevent you from passing the virus to others. The virus is carried in this way between people when they speak, sneeze, or talk.
MYTH: You don’t need to wear a mask outdoors. This is not true.
TRUTH: Tiny droplets that are released when you speak, sneeze, or talk can travel in the air and be inhaled by others whether you are indoors or outdoors.
So in areas where it’s not possible to stay at least two metres away from others, you should wear a face covering.
And remember, there are no half measures. A mask worn under your nose or chin is just a face-warmer. So let’s do it right and help prevent the spread of this virus to protect ourselves and the ones we love. Let’s do it for Derbyshire.
Visit www.debyshire.gov.uk/coronavirus for more information including how to protect yourself from coronavirus, how and when to get a test, when to self-isolate, how to access support and the numbers of cases in Derbyshire.