People across the world are wearing face masks to protect against coronavirus Getty Image

HOME    People across the world are wearing face masks to protect against coronavirus Getty Image

Disposable face masks block large particles from entering your mouth, while more tight-fitting N95 respirator masks are far more effective at shielding you from airborne illnesses. Both of these masks could potentially help protect you from getting a viral infection, but US government officials have emphasized that the American public should not purchase face masks to prevent themselves from getting infected. Instead, only people who are displaying symptoms of coronavirus should wear masks to prevent the spread of the disease to others. 

On Feb. 29, US Surgeon General Jerome Adams tweeted:

Adams' tweet echoes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's guidance that the general public should not use face masks to protect themselves from coronavirus -- only those who are exhibiting symptoms should wear masks to protect others. The CDC's page on COVID-19 treatment and prevention states: "CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a face mask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19."

Despite that, fears of coronavirus have made finding these masks online difficult. As of Feb. 29, both face masks and N95 respirator masks are either sold out online or marked up significantly, especially on Amazon and Walmart.com.

2020-03-16 19:36
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