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Face Masks and Face Shields

With the ongoing spread of COVID-19, protecting yourself and others is more important than ever. It is currently suggested by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to wear face coverings when in public to help stop the spread of this horrible virus. Face masks and face shields may be worn together, but the face shield should never be worn alone as a way to stop the virus.

Basic Difference

A face shield is a plastic shield that is attached to a band or goggles which is worn on the head with the plastic shield covering the face from brow to past the chin and side to side. The shield is open on the sides and bottom which allows air to flow around and underneath. A face mask covers the mouth and nose worn by ear loops and or headband to keep it in place.

Reasons Some People Wear Face Shields

Some people like to wear a face shield with a face mask. The shield covers the eyes as well as the nose and mouth to create a larger barrier against large droplets carrying the virus. The face shields protect against splatters with close contact, but they cannot stop the flow of airborne particles from flowing around the sides of the shield. In a European study involving a restaurant, the waitstaff that wore only a face shield contracted the virus whereas the staff wearing a cloth facemask did not. In a FAU study, their video showed how the droplets flow around the sides and bottom edge if worn alone.

We Should All Wear an Effective Facemask when out in Public

Our face masks are easy to put on and comfortable to wear due to breathable fabric and elastic ear loops. Since it is estimated that around 40% of people infected with the virus are asymptomatic, meaning they don’t show or feel any symptoms including no fever, it is very important that each one of us wear a facemask that is effective at stopping droplets in order to stop the airborne spread of this disease.

Let’s All Do Our Part

A face mask is the best defensive tool we have right now against the virus along with good hand washing and social distancing. You can add goggles and/or a face shield if you are seeking more protection when traveling by plane or you know you are going to be in very close contact with others. Healthcare professionals on the frontline wear an N95 Facemask plus face shield and goggles which speaks to the effectiveness of this plan. As a citizen in the general population, if you can only wear one, the face mask is the best option of face covering when in public to help slow the spread of this deadly virus. Let’s do this!