Face Masks: Are They Necessary to Wear During an Outbreak?

Source: China Daily

In China, almost everyone now wears a face mask. Chinese people wear face masks just to protect ourselves as well as other people against the virus being spread. But in the Western world, if you're wearing face masks, it means you're sick. That's why some Asians who wear face masks have experienced discrimination, and even been assaulted. Is it a cultural difference or purely discrimination?


The truth is it helps, but no.

For coronavirus protection, you need to protect both your eyes, nose and mouth, as the most viable path of infection is through these parts.

Also one of the top likely ways of infection is how your hand comes into contact with the virus then touches the above three, thus completing the transfer process.

However, judging by the atmosphere of whatever country you live in, you may be heavily discriminated against if you went out with a facial mask and goggles.


A surgical mask is better than no protection at all and also prevents dirty hands from touching the face. Combined with recommended hygiene practice of washing hands regularly, it can improve odds of not being infected.

N95 masks are relatively expensive and required for only extreme circumstances. The ones with the exhalation valve are the best to prevent overheating and ease breathing.

Masks are often worn in Far East Asian countries as a means to not only prevent infection, but transmission to others. As it is not always possible, nor realistic, for everyone to stay at home and quarantine themselves over a slight cold, wearing a mask is a good compromise to mitigate transmission while being considerate of others.

Barry (Italy)

I believe that an N95-rated face mask or better will offer more protection for the COVID-19 coronavirus for both sides. I do not believe what the news says because they have their own motives for saying this because of the lack of available face masks! For people, including families, hospitals, property management companies and hotels preparing to protect their families, staff, co-workers and customers from the COVID-19 coronavirus.

Siva Kumar (US)

Masks protect from only particulate matter in the air you breathe but they can't filter out microbes. Well, you won't be breathing in microbes sitting on dust particles or such but a free-floating microbe is too small to be stopped by a mask.

How does a mask help you? Say someone nearby sneezes or coughs -- the droplets thrown out by them will be stopped by the mask, that is all.

Derek Harkness (US)

Probably not. Just a face mask is considered insufficient protection

1. It doesn't cover the eyes

2. It causes people to touch their faces more often

3. People often wear them incorrectly

4. You waste the limited supply of masks that other people really need more than you.