Should we be wearing masks? Would pulling our shirt over our nose do? Seriously, should we be wearing masks?
Now, both the Central for Disease Control and the World Health Organization have already recommended mask usage when social distancing is made difficult, but other health officials have started to examine just how important mask usage is on a larger social scale. According to a study published in the Nature Medicine journal, if most of the United States population committed to wearing masks, that alone could be enough to “ameliorate the worst effects of epidemic resurgences in many states.”
In fact, mask wearing is going to be critical over the next couple of months. As documented succinctly in the Nature Medicine overview article, researchers ran extensive models on the varying results of different mask measures and predicted that “as of 23 September, increasing US mask use to 95% could save nearly 100,000 lives in the period up to 1 January 2021.”
So, not only do masks safeguard the individual wearing them, as stated under the article’s section discussing the “emerging consensus that mask use protects the wearer as well as other people,” but a population’s mask usage can determine how rampant the virus spreads. In short, wearing a mask is a simple and consistent way to help save lives. Wearing a mask is a demonstration of our shared responsibility, and hopefully a reflection of our solidarity as we each do our part to help move forward as safely as possible.