The Science of Masks

There’s a lot of bad science out there, particularly regarding masks. One FB post making the rounds says that since the coronavirus is around a tenth of a micron and N95 masks work in the .25micron range, that they are ineffective. Logical, but wrong. What we know of this virus is that it hitches a ride on water droplets which are in the size range to be effectively slowed or stopped by masks. N95 masks stop most of the incoming, but even bandanas and normal masks are good at stopping outgoing droplets. When you cough or sneeze in a mask, the smaller portion of droplets that emerge are going slower and tend to fall within the six feet we are keeping apart. My body can fight off the last few stragglers that manage to run the gauntlet between two masks. But I can’t defend myself against an asymptomatic fruitcake that crowds my space while refusing to wear a mask. Don’t be like the girl in the cartoon. Be willing to learn from the experts about the science behind the disease. And yes, the science keeps changing because this novel virus keeps proving itself to be more clever and deadly than we thought possible at first. Trust the CDC and wear a mask.

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