NEW YORK - Now that masks are an accepted, integral part of our reality comes the notion that the more the merrier. A new study out of Virginia Tech shows that doubling up could give you twice the protection from COVID-19.
"There have been studies showing double masking can be more effective," said Linsey Marr, a professor of civil and environmental engineering.
Surgical masks are, perhaps, the most commonly used face-covering right now. And while they do work, they don't always fit perfectly. Marr said they leave gaps on the sides, on your nose, or your chin.
"If you put a tight-fitting cloth mask, it will secure down the edges of the surgical mask so there are no leaks," Marr said.
The only type of mask you don't need to double up on is an N95, assuming it fits correctly, Marr said.
As for cloth masks, the thinking is that those that tie around the head may fit better than those around with ear loops. also, wearing a mask with a face shield is also an effective strategy.
The bottom line is the more barriers between you and the possible covid-infected respiratory droplets of another the better.
So if two are better than one, then are three better than two? Not necessarily.
At some point, wearing multiple masks makes it hard to breathe, which may cause you to pull down the masks and expose your nose. And that might also expose you to the virus.
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