Neck Gaiters, Masks with Valves May Not Be Effective in Preventing the Spread of Coronavirus

“Those relief valves are fantastic if what you want to do is protect yourself from the outside world because air doesn’t come in through them,” Warren said. “If what you’re trying to do in this pandemic is protect the outside world from you, it completely defeats the purpose.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have also recommended against wearing masks with exhalation valves.

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“The purpose of masks is to keep respiratory droplets from reaching others to aid with source control,” an update on the CDC website reads. “Masks with one-way valves or vents allow exhaled air to be expelled out through holes in the material. This can allow exhaled respiratory droplets to reach others and potentially spread the COVID-19 virus.”

Though some are better than others, Warren said that most masks do really help slow the spread of coronavirus.

“You can really see the mask is doing something,” he said. “There’s a lot of controversy and people say, ‘Well, masks don’t do anything.’ Well, the answer is some don’t, but most do.”

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