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Is it useful to wear only a mask while traveling?

Is it useful to wear only a mask while traveling?

(CNN) –– After a federal judge in Florida reviewed the ruling and overturned the order, the compulsory use of masks on planes and other public transportation was revoked by the Joe Biden government. On Monday some passengers applauded the decision, while others decided to continue using safety measures.

The masks provide the most protection against the spread of virus-carrying particles in the air when everyone wears them. But some research also suggests that it can protect the wearer by acting as a barrier between the particles and the nose and mouth.

“Yesterday I really needed it when I was on the plane [uso de] Masks on public transport. I definitely had my mask on the whole plane, ”Chris Cappa, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of California, Davis, who studies aerosol particles and masks, shared in an email on Tuesday.

While traveling from Sacramento to San Diego, Cappa noticed that the number of passengers wearing masks was greatly reduced.

“I use my N95 for a while while traveling. Personally, I’m more interested in small, crowded places, like planes, than in large, relatively open spaces like airports,” Kappa said.

Personal use of the mask

Some airlines no longer need masks: look at the reaction of passengers 0:50

If one person wears a mask while others do not, it is called personal use of the mask.

“The level of protection from personal mask use largely depends on two factors: how well the mask fits you, and how effectively the mask material filters out the particles that can carry the virus. In general, masks such as N95s and KN95s provide greater protection than surgical or non-surgical cloth masks, because they are. It can create a tight seal against your face and surgical masks tend to filter better than similarly fitted fabric masks, ”Kappa wrote.

“However, different masks fit better or worse for different faces, so it’s important to find one that works best for you. For example, you can adjust the ear rings to make the mask fit more,” he said. “Even the best mask is suitable for its fit. But a well-fitted N95 can reduce the amount of potentially infectious particles you inhale by more than 20 times,” he added.

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Kappa noted that even if everyone around you is without a mask, wearing a well-fitting N95 will reduce the amount of infectious particles you can breathe. “Ideally, if you have 100 infectious particles that you would breathe without a mask, you’ll only inhale five or fewer of them with a properly fitted N95,” he explained in his email.

What kind of mask?

Cloth masks – recommended before infection when other protective ingredients are in short supply – can filter out large droplets. But even the most effective masks, such as N95s, can filter out small aerosols or particles that victims can expel. This was explained in December by Erin Promaz, an associate professor of biology at Dartmouth University in Massachusetts.

The judge quashed the order for the use of masks in transport 1:14

According to the Center for Occupational Safety and Health (DCDC) for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), N95 masks, approved by the US National Institutes of Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH), can filter at least 95% of airborne particles if used correctly. . Surgical or disposable masks are 5% to 10% less effective than N95s, Bromage noted.

A CDC study released in February found that those who claimed to have always worn a mask indoors in public were less likely to test positive for COVID-19 than those who did not wear a mask between February and December 2021.

Of the more than 500 people who reported the type of mask they wore, 56% of those who wore cloth masks, 66% and 83% of those who wore surgical masks wore a N95s or KN95s, compared to those who did not, according to the CDC.

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Now, Kappa warns CNN that “if everyone stops wearing masks, those percentages could go down.”

Dr. is the Director of Health for the Department of Infectious Diseases at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor. Preeti Malani has been treating patients with Govt-19 for more than two years. Her patients often do not wear masks, but she does.

“As far as I know, I do not have Govt-19,” Malani said. “So the personal protection of the masks works very well, especially when combined with the vaccine and good ventilation.”

Malani added that even those at high risk for the most severe Govt-19 disease feel safe to travel. Especially if they follow mitigation measures such as vaccination, testing and wearing well-fitting high-quality masks. Yes, those around them are OK even without a mask.

“That doesn’t mean you can’t use public transportation. That means you have to think about it, ”he said. In that sense, he added, he was more concerned about the spread of the Covit-19 in the crowded bar than the high-quality aircraft.

Other security methods

Philadelphia imposes the use of masks due to the increase in cases 2:24

“When you wear a mask with vaccination, ventilation, possible screening and social exclusion, you can manage that risk,” Malani said. “What I do not want to see is that people are suddenly so scared of Govt-19 that they will not travel anymore.”

This week, he will travel to Lisbon, Portugal to attend a meeting of the European Congress on Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases. “I plan to wear my mask on the plane,” he said, not because he’s worried about getting seriously ill from Covit-19, but because he does not want to delay the trip home if he catches it abroad.

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Kappa wrote in his email that the “dangerous” time for germs to spread during travel is when people are “stable”. For example, when everyone is standing in line to get off a plane.

“Because air exchange – which helps keep the air clean – is high when there is movement (vehicle) inside planes, buses and trains,” he said.

“On an airplane, you can open the vents (if you are on your own plane) and direct them towards you because the exhaust air will be filtered. Also, if you talk to others, it is always helpful to keep it at a certain distance,” he added. “Of course, this is not always possible on public transport, and it would be helpful to try to avoid direct breathing from your neighbors in this case,” he said.

On the other hand, Dr. Vivek Serian, a Chicago-based internal medicine doctor and father of three young children, believes that changing the mandatory wearing of masks for travel is imminent.

“In my view, we should not suspend mask orders in this country until everyone who wants the vaccine, including children under the age of five, has access and access,” Serian wrote in an email. , This Tuesday.

“If you have an immunodeficiency or family members who are immunocompromised or have not been vaccinated, the use of personal masks may be more effective. Importantly, it is best to use the best masks with N95 respirators as they provide a high degree of protection.” , He explained. “I continue to wear masks because all three of my children are under the age of five and not eligible for vaccinations at this time,” he said.

Kristen Rogers of CNN contributed to this report.