Are masks really effective in preventing the spread of COVID-19?
In the event that you need to leave your house for a short period of time to run essential errands, such as getting groceries and replenishing prescription medicines, it is recommended that you wear a mask or cloth face covering.
Wearing a mask, along with proper hand washing and maintaining social distancing, is our best individual and community defense against COVID-19. If you are going outside your home and interacting with other people who are not household members, you should use a clean face covering.
Wearing a mask alone does not make you safe from COVID-19, you also need to keep your hands clean and avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, aside from keeping a distance of at least six feet from other people.
Wearing a mask may give you a false sense of security that you are safe from COVID-19, so you must stay vigilant and observe other evidence-based strategies for slowing the spread of the disease. It is important to note that wearing a face covering is not a substitute for staying home and keeping your participation in non-essential social activities at a minimum.
If you have been exposed to persons who test positive for COVID-19, you may also catch COVID-19 and infect other people without knowing it. People who contract COVID-19 can be contagious even before they experience symptoms.
When you cover your nose and mouth thereby preventing the release of droplets carrying COVID-19, you will be helpful in ensuring that other people will not get infected through you.
You touch your face less when it is covered with a mask. This is crucial because touching your face after touching something contaminated with COVID-19 increases the odds of you getting sick with COVID-19.
Source: LA Public Health