ANN/THE STATESMAN – The recent pandemic has taught us how crucial it is to use the right face mask to keep self-protected. They have been the primary source of prevention against COVID-19.
Due to the extended duration of the pandemic, for a lot of us face masks have also become a lifestyle accessory rather than a necessity. Many incumbent and new brands have jumped on the bandwagon and turned face masks into a new fashion accessory.
As the pandemic has receded and things are returning to normal now, we have faced a new problem: Air pollution. With the air quality index reaching alarming levels, it is a new reminder to start using face masks once again.
One must be very cautious before choosing the right mask as only ISI-certified FFP1, FFP2 and FFP3 can provide the right protection.
It is crucial to remember that wearing an ineffective mask is as good as not wearing one. Rather than just looking fashionable one can feel safe at the same time too.
Masks should be treated as a necessity and not a fashion statement. The sole purpose of PPE is protection from contaminants and dust. A lot of time sub-par quality face masks or fashion masks can compromise the efficacy of a mask.
It is crucial to remember that an ineffective mask can be dangerous for the wearer and the people around us. In extreme cases, the limited knowledge of fabrics to be used, breathability, comfort, etc can cause breathlessness or hypoxia due to thick layers of the fabric and prolonged wearing.
Yes, since face masks have become an essential part of our wardrobe, they must stay a necessity and not just a fashion statement. It is a tool for prevention and must be taken in the same way.