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The importance of face masks

COVID-19 has resulted in many regulations that people have to follow in order to hinder its spread. One is for everyone to wear face masks or a face covering when going out. 

There are many different types of masks, but not all of them are effective. “The N-95 masks are the most effective but are typically saved for health professionals in hospitals,” CVHS nurse Sandee Velasquez suggested. “Surgical masks that you can buy over-the-counter and two-layer cloth masks are recommended for everyday use, anything with two-layers.” 

With schools reopening, new rules require schools to follow the same recommendations dictated by Alameda County Department of Public Health. Those going to campuses must wear face masks at all times and social distance or stand six feet away from other people when outside or in public spaces. 

“A mask must be worn while on school property or in school buildings (medical exceptions exist),” according to an administration email. 

Students entering campus are also required to wear their face covering at all times. CVHS allows small and controlled groups of people back to campus; in addition, these people have to follow the protocols that are in place at school.

“Face masks are a good idea since there is no loss. If it works, it will help prevent the spread of Covid-19,” said senior Amy McGowan. “If it doesn’t, you still have a layer to protect you which is better than leaving yourself exposed.”

Although face masks do not completely prevent people from catching the virus, they do lower the risk of catching it by a lot especially if everyone wears them. Face masks work by containing the wearer’s germs from spreading, so if everyone wears them, there will be less spreading. It mostly protects other people, and not the wearer, that is why it is important for everyone to wear them. 

“All the scientific evidence is showing that this is our best bet for us to prevent the spread of the virus until we have a vaccine which we know could be a long way away. The virus is spread when we are speaking, particles are let out into the air,” Velasquez said. “So for those that may not be sick or are asymptomatic or presymptomatic with the virus, I think it is extremely important and I fully support wearing masks in order to control the virus in our community.”