CDC Mask Guidelines – In the last two years, the government of every country has realized nothing is going to work on novel coronavirus other than precautions. That is why most governments in the world try to maintain as much COVID protocol as possible.
Wearing masks, maintaining social distance, regular tests, and vaccination are the four key points to preventing COVID-19. Since the very first day, the federal government of the United States of America is insisting everyone use masks as much as possible.
On several occasions, the federal health department along with state health departments have issued guidelines related to wearing masks, and they are also driving awareness campaigns. Let’s take a look at CDC mask guidelines. Along with that, we will also talk about the benefits and other things related to masks.
Latest CDC Mask Guidelines
The United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention keep issuing mask guidelines regularly. Even though the cases of novel coronavirus are going down, recently, the president of the United States addressed the nation and warned everyone that COVID would keep coming with new variants and we should be ready to fight it.
In that series, on the 25th of February 2022, in a statement, CDC issued the latest CDC mask guidelines for every American in the United States. Kindly remember these are guidelines, not mandatory rules.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has recently launched a new COVID-19 county check tool for every county in the United States.
You can use this tool to check the level of COVID-19 in your county or if you are traveling somewhere, and you can use a mask according to that.
The tool has three levels of indication: low, medium, and high. If you are in low levels, then you can wear a mask based on your personal preferences. On the other hand, if you are in medium levels, then you have to wear masks if you are immune-compromised or at high risk of severe illness.
The last level is the high level, where you have to wear a tight-fit mask in all indoor public places, regardless of your vaccination status or individual risk. Kindly click on the button given below to access the tool directly on the official website of the Centers for Disease Control and prevention.
People at Higher Risk
Apart from the above-given tool, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have also issued the latest mask guidelines for all people at higher risk for severe illness. These are the special guidelines, and you should follow them for your safety.
- If you are 65 or older, you should keep wearing a mask wherever possible.
- If you already have a medical condition, then CDC suggests you keep wearing masks.
- Pregnant and recently pregnant women are also advised to keep using the mask.
- You should always try to wear a mask or respirator that provides greater protection from COVID-19 than a single-ply or cloth mask.
CDC Mask Guidelines for Children
CDC has issued separate guidelines for children also regarding the use of masks. As per the guidelines, children aged two and above should wear masks or respirators to protect themselves.
As per the guidelines, you should always choose a well-fitted and comfortable mask for your children. Apart from that, you can also select a respirator. A poorly fitted mask or uncomfortable mask is not worth wearing.
- Always choose the right fit mask for your children, which covers the nose and under the chin but does not impair vision.
- Always follow the user instructions given with the mask or respirator for your kids. These instructions are very important to make sure that your product is fitting properly.
- Always try to use a single type of mask or respirator. Kindly do not keep changing them.
- If your child has any medical conditions such as heart or lung, then you should contact their doctor first before using any type of mask or respirator.
- After using the mask or a respirator, if your child has a hard time breathing or gets dizzy, Kindly remove it and use the other type.
CDC Mask Guidelines for Disabled People
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have also issued mask-related guidelines for people with disabilities. These guidelines include both people with age and certain disabilities.
Many times disabled people find it very hard to use the mask and understand its importance. The caregiver must understand the situation and follow the guidelines.
- Caregivers should keep checking if the mask is worn correctly or not.
- Caregivers should not allow frequent touching of the mask and face.
- Always keep checking if the person is sucking, drooling, or having access to saliva on the mask.
- Caregivers should not allow the person to remove the mask without assistance.
Benefits of Using Masks
Many people in the United States are against the use of masks. We have even seen a few small rallies where a few people gathered to protest against the use of masks in public places. Believe it or not, masks do provide a lot of benefits. Let’s take a look at a few of them.
Lower My Risk of Infection
a mask is no guarantee, but it can lower the risk of infection, including the infection of novel coronavirus. As for many studies, mask lower the infection of any virus by more than 60%.
The Center for Disease Control and Prevention keeps issuing the latest CDC mask guidelines from time to time so that they can make people aware and encourage everyone to use them.
Save Other People
When you use a mask, it won’t just save you, but it can also save other people from getting the infection of a novel coronavirus from you.
In many studies, it has been proven that when you use a mask, it lowers the risk of infection from you to other people by 50%. And if both persons are using the mask, the risk of infection goes all the way down to 4%.
Types of Mask
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have also given a small tutorial on how you can select the best mask depending on the fitting and material.
As per the guidelines, you should always use a gap that can let air in from the edges. Usually, you find gaps on masks that are the wrong size, or you are wearing them wrong.
There are many types of cloth masks available in the market, and anyone can make them from a variety of fabrics. CDC mask guidelines mention you should wear cloth masks that completely fit over your nose, mouth, and chin to prevent any kind of leak.
You should use a cloth mask with multiple layers tightly woven with breathable fabric. You can always test the fabric of the mask by holding it up to a bright light source and checking if the light passes or not.
Procedure masks are one-time variable masks, and you should dispose of them after you have used them one time. Sometimes they are also referred to as surgical masks over medical procedure masks.
As the fear of new COVID variants is rising day by day in the United States, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention has also issued new CDC mask guidelines for all residents of the US.
CDC has also introduced a new tool where you can check the impact of a novel coronavirus in your county. We have included the link to the tool in our article above. As soon as you click on the button, it will directly take you to the tool page.
Under the tool page, you will find your county in three stages either its own low risk, medium risk, or high risk. People who belong to low-risk countries can remove their masks even in public places. On the other hand, if you are in a high-risk county, then you should keep wearing a mask even in indoor places.
Parts from the two CDC mask guidelines also include specific guidelines for people in the higher risk category, children, people with disabilities, etc.
How to take care of reusable cloth masks?
As per the CDC mask guidelines, If you are using a reusable mask and it is wet or dirty, kindly put it in a sealed plastic bag until you can wash it. If your cloth mask is dry and clean, you can store it in a breathable bag, for example, a paper or mesh fabric bag. It will keep the mask clean.
Can I take off my mask while eating or drinking outside?
As per the latest CDC mask guidelines, you can take off your mask while eating or drinking outside of your home. As soon as you take off your mask, you should keep it clean and try to put it in your pocket, purse, or a clean paper bag so that you can use it after eating or drinking. Kindly wash your hands or sanitize them after taking off your mask and putting back on.