Are two face masks better than one in shielding against COVID-19? Here's what Dr. Anthony Fauci, the top infectious disease expert in the United States, had to say.
This week, Fauci was asked if people should wear more than one mask simultaneously. He responded it made more sense that it would be more effective.
As COVID-19 continues to cut a steady path throughout the U.S., some people wonder what they can do to combat the novel coronavirus and its variants in addition to standard regulations.
Are Two Face Masks Better Than One?
According to Dr. Fauci, "It likely does because this is a physical covering to prevent droplets and virus to get in. If you have a physical covering with one layer and you put another layer on it, it just makes common sense that it likely would be more effective," reported WJHL.
He is not the only physician in favor of wearing two face masks.
How to Double Mask
One quick option is to use a homemade balaclava mask over your existing mask to have several additional layers of cotton. Ronit Bose Roy, a Twitter user from Mumbai whose almost 330,000 followers include Salman Rushdie, showed how to fold a T-shirt into a face mask in 30 seconds. The video has garnered over 1.9 million views.
The first step is to pull a T-shirt over your head until the neck opening lines up with your nose. Second, fold the bottom of the shirt up once, and double-fold it down across your face. Lastly, criss-cross the back of the T-shirt once and pull it up over the top of your head.
Meanwhile, in Canada, Manitoba has not yet altered its stance on the number of masks people should be wearing in the province. Other experts stated wearing over one mask at a time could be beneficial in several cases.
Dr. Anand Kumar, a Winnipeg critical care and infectious disease specialist, has been studying the efficacy of face masks. He agrees with Fauci, as it provides an extra layer to help diminish the number of particles being spread from an individual's mouth when they sneeze, talk, and cough, reported Global News.
Multiple variants of the coronavirus have surfaced in the United States. Some are more easily prevalent among people. Data is beginning to suggest that some variants could be more threatening.
According to Michael LeVasseur, assistant professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at Drexel University, "It's like opening a lock. If you're trying to open a door with a bobby pin, that's going to take a little longer, but if you have the key that fits the lock, it's now a lot quicker to open the door. The virus itself is becoming better suited to infecting cells. It's more efficient," reported Inquirer.
It could mean that it takes less time and less amount of the virus to get infected upon exposure.
In last week's inauguration of U.S. President Joe Biden, one new trend was double masking. Underneath Biden's black face covering was a medical-grade mask. Also, underneath poet Amanda Gorman's red and diamante-strewn mask was another mask.