In recent months, we have seen people protesting mandatory masking around the world. Despite this noise, there are too many disadvantages to not wearing masks.
A main reason why people protest wearing masks is freedom, rights and choice. Additionally, many people believe that face masks are harmful due to misleading claims floating on social media. A few examples of these false claims are that masks deprive your body of oxygen, cause carbon dioxide poisoning or harm your immune system.
These claims have no evidence to back them up. In fact, the World Health Organization recommends wearing a face mask because it acts as a barrier for infectious droplets, spread during coughs and sneezes. Moreover, masks also protect other people by blocking transmission and circulation of the virus in the community. This is especially important when physical distancing is not easy, like in grocery stores and pharmacies.
Public health experts believe that even though masks cannot always protect people from getting sick, they can aid in reducing the spread of the virus.
Even though cloth masks can’t fully prevent you from inhaling virus particles, they can decrease 95 per cent of the breathing particles that can transmit the virus to anyone around. It can also reduce the risk of oral transmission of the virus to your nose or mouth.
So wearing a mask benefits and protects you and those around you by decreasing the chance of people catching the virus.
If people comply with mask wearing policies, it might be easier to get the economy running as more people can, cautiously, go to work. Also, this may be a chance for entrepreneurs and industries alike to start businesses that make masks.
It is safe to conclude that there are many important pros to wearing masks.
On the darker side, there are definitely some downsides to not wearing a face mask, with the major one being lockdown.
At this point in the pandemic, there are not many alternatives other than sanitizing, handwashing, physical distancing and wearing face masks if we want to keep our lives going without the fear of being infected. Our only safe option is to follow government policies, which includes wearing a mask to slow the spread of the virus.
If we do not stick to government guidelines, COVID- 19 infections will continue to be a strain on our health care system. Local doctors worry about providing immediate care to new COVID-19 patients in addition to ones already suffering from conditions such as heart attacks or strokes.
Additionally, lockdown can bring along its own consequences such as fear, anxiety and mental health issues. As a student, I can say it is very hard to study from home while missing social interactions with friends. The longer we don’t comply with masking policies, the longer we will have to stay at home to study.
Our goal should be flattening the curve to fight COVID-19. As responsible citizens of the nation, we can do our part by taking small steps such as physically distancing ourselves and wearing face masks. This will not only avoid overwhelming our health care system but also decrease the spike of new infections due to reduced transmission.
We must flatten the curve, so that we can resume normal life as soon as possible.