How and when to use face masks

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), people will only need to wear a face mask if they are coughing, sneezing, or taking care of someone with COVID-19.

Face masks are only effective if a person uses them correctly. Take the following steps to use and dispose of a face mask correctly:

  • Before touching the mask or the face, wash the hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Make sure that the mask covers the nose and mouth, with no gaps between the face and the mask.
  • While wearing the mask, avoid touching it.If a person does touch the mask while wearing it, they should wash the hands again.
  • Avoid reusing single-use masks.
  • Do not write anything, such as a person’s name, on the mask. This damages mask integrity and could allow contaminants to enter.
  • Replace a mask if it becomes damp.
  • Remove the mask by lifting the string at the back, rather than by touching the front.
  • Discard used masks immediately into a closed garbage bin, then wash the hands again.

69 thoughts on “How and when to use face masks

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