During cold and flu seasons, face masks are common sights in heavily populated areas, both home and abroad. Now, during the coronavirus outbreak, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) recommends the use of a mask in areas where social distancing is difficult.
Unfortunately, most stores are sold out and “medical grade” masks must be reserved for health-care professionals. In light of these challenges, Facebook and other social media sources are filled with hints and plans for creating your own “DIY” mask.
The primary function of this type of mask is to protect you from someone already carrying the virus who may not have obvious symptoms. So if everyone wears a mask, the risk of transmission and spread significantly decreases.
Here’s some tips to making a “hand-crafted” coronavirus mask more effective:
- The more layers of fabric, preferably cotton (as in a bed sheet or pillow case) the better. But not so many layers you can’t breathe through the mask.
- Add a layer non-woven interfacing, like a reusable grocery tote or lunch bag to help block droplets of virus.
- Tape a pipe cleaner onto the outside of the mask, making it possible to pinch the mask onto and much easier if you wear glasses.
- Surgeon General Dr. Jerome Adams has released a video showing his method for using a square of cloth (or a bandana) and two large rubber bands. See the video.