The New Normal? Will Face Shields Replace Masks to Fight COVID?

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Since the pandemic started, the use of face masks along with standard social distancing protocols in public places was widely spread by the government and health care institutions in televisions, radio stations, print, and online. But as the cases of COVID-19 have been spreading like a wildfire, a piece of additional equipment was introduced to the public to provide more protection against the deadly disease. The face mask was the earliest recommended protective gear against the spread of the Coronavirus. Initially prioritized for and used by healthcare workers as part of their Personal Protective Equipment of PPE, widespread use was enforced in an attempt to stop the spread among the public. As the spread of the virus increasingly grew out of hand, the face shield became another requirement for the public to use when there is a need to go outside their homes to run errands, while on their way to work, and even while they are working.

A face shield is essentially a bent plastic or Plexiglas board joined to a headband that can be worn over the face. It should fit safely so there isn’t a space between the band and the brow. The shield ought to likewise reach out past the jawline. Face shields give a significant level of protection for those who wear it. Given they cover the entire face – the mouth, nose, and eyes – a high level of viral particles is kept from reaching the wearer. Face shields are apparently best at shielding from sneezes and coughs. (As studies have appeared, nonetheless, viral droplets, especially little airborne discourse particles, can stay in the air for a while and these particles can be sucked in around the shield.

There is proof of evidence that face shield decreases the exposure to and exposure to the considerable number of respiratory droplets. In the event that you can get settled that face shield gives satisfactory security of the respiratory tract, they offer you the accompanying advantages over a face mask:

  • They cover your eyes, mouth, and nose; they also cover your face so stop the possibility of respiratory droplets from contacting all over your face spread into contact with a mucous membrane.
  • They make it a lot harder for you to make contact on your face.
  • They offer the potential for repeat usage and decontamination.
  • They have less possibility of prompting the occupational hazards due to long periods of wearing masks like a damaged nose and nose bridge or feeling of pain.
  • It’s simpler to communicate with others through them since others can see your facial expressions and lip-reading.

Wearing a face shield won’t be enough to give you protection from any kind of virus, an individual should know how to properly wear and handle it, to maximize its overall benefits. There are two types of face shields that are available in the market, you can choose whether to go for a disposable or non-disposable face shield. You can go for a non-dispensable face shield that can be used for more than once as long as it’s not twisted, damaged, or cracked. In the event that your face shield gets damaged, just get a new one and don’t try to fix it. Face shields are easy to replace and reasonably priced, you can even buy the disposable shields in bulk that can also come with a discount.

In the event that you choose to buy a face shield for personal usage, wear it with a face cover to lessen your danger of exposure to Coronavirus. Make sure to clean it after each use. Here are tips on how to clean your face shield at home.

  • To start cleaning it, submerge the protective panel in warm, soapy water first to get any surface toxins off and gently clean the surface with a delicate cloth or sponge. Next, flush and tenderly dry your face shield with a delicate towel made of either cotton or microfiber. You can separately clean the headpiece.
  • You can also clean a face shield with antibacterial wipes, however, be cautious since they can leave a residue. You can likewise clean your face shield with wipes that have 70% isopropyl alcohol. Don’t be tempted to use a window or household cleaner on your face shield as these could potentially damage it.

If you are going to visit a healthcare facility, there are also recommend ways to clean your face shield in a healthcare setting:

  • While wearing gloves, cautiously wipe the inside part then followed by the outside portion of the face shield, by using a clean piece of cloth soaked with a neutral cleaner solution or a cleaning wipe.
  • Wipe the outside portion of the face shield clean with a towel and water or alcohol to eliminate buildup.
  • Completely dry the face shield, it can be air dry or by using a clean absorbent towel.
  • Remove your hand gloves and perform the recommended standard hand hygiene.

It’s better to be safe than sorry as the old saying goes. Some people may find wearing a face shield uncomfortable since it will be an added layer to our face that makes normal breathing a bit challenging for some, but it can give us enough protection that we need in fighting coronavirus to easily penetrate our bodies. When we fight different battles, it is easier to defeat our enemies if we can see them, but not in the case of this deadly virus that cannot be seen with our naked eyes and can be easily spread from one person to another. By following health protocols by our national government, we do not only make our families worry-free but would also help our government and health organizations win this global dilemma which everyone is still fighting at and where some have already spared their lives by an unseen enemy.  

-Nora Price

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