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Nevada Today

Nevada Today is a nonpartisan, independently owned and operated site dedicated to providing up-to-date news and smart analysis on the issues that impact Nevada's communities and businesses.

HealthNews and informationThe Economy

Nevada Advisory On Face Masks

Summary: As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact our health care
systems, both nationally and right here in Nevada, it has become
increasingly important to slow the spread. In response to this, the State’s
medical experts have weighed in to provide everyone with information on
how to both protect ourselves and others with improvised masks. Keep in
mind, FDA regulated PPE is currently in short supply and should be
reserved for those working on the front line to combat this disease. They
need it constantly and more than we do. However, there are several
alternatives to protecting yourself. Below is some general guidance on the

why, who, where and when, what, and how, on face coverings.
Why should we wear a face covering?: Although research is still being
conducted on whether improvised face coverings can stop the contraction
of the disease, it’s been established that even improvised homemade face
coverings can reduce the spread of the virus from infected individuals.
Some people who are infected don’t show any symptoms at all and by
wearing a face covering they can reduce the risk of spreading the virus.

Who else should wear an improvised face covering?: This virus can
impact everyone, regardless of your age or gender. Many of those who’ve
contracted the virus may be asymptomatic, so it’s critical we all take
precautions to limit the spread. No matter how tough you think you are,
COVID-19 doesn’t care. It can impact even the strongest of us.

When and where should I wear an improvised face covering?:
Nevadans who wish to utilize some type of precautionary measure are
encouraged to use an improvised face covering whenever they leave their
residence to obtain any essential good or service.

What improvised face covering should I wear?: Whatever one works
and fits best for you, based on a few design principles provided by our
knowledgeable medical team. To assist you in that, they’ve provided some
basic design principles, ideas, and information on caring for your new face

What are the basic design principles for an improvised face covering?:
Here’s a list of the basic design principles you should follow:

  1. 1) When creating an improvised face covering, make sure it fits snugly
    around the nose and mouth, from the nose to the chin, and all the
    way to the cheeks past the corners of your mouth. There should be
    no openings.
  2. Use breathable, but tightly woven fabric.
  3. The material should be washable, so you can reuse the face covering.
    You’ll want to wash it thoroughly after use.
  4. Tough fabric is the best. When you wash it, you’ll want to use high
    temperatures and a cleaning product – preferably bleach – so the
    material will need to hold up.
  5. You’re going to be breathing through the material, so it should be
    able to handle the amount of moisture you produce when breathing.
  6. Make sure it’s securely fastened behind your ears. Elastic typically
    works, especially when it’s looped behind the ears.
  7. Always remember a few key things about your alternate or
    improvised face covering:

    1. The face covering should always be properly put on and taken
      off to avoid self-contamination – avoid touching the front of the
      face covering
    2. Change out your face covering and wash it when it becomes
      saturated from breathing into it, or if you think you might have
      been in a contaminated situation.
    3. Don’t share! Even with members of your household!!! Keep
      them separated, clearly labeled, and in separate containers

How do I care for my improvised face covering?: Wash your face
covering often. It is recommended that you wash in between uses in hot
water – regular laundry detergent works great – and always dry completely
on the hottest setting possible.

How do I make an improvised face covering?: Although there is no
standard design for a homemade face covering, check out the links below
for design considerations. Also remember, innovation using the design
principles above is encouraged.

Example Designs to get you started:

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About Author

Michael McGreer Mesquite, Nevada
Dr. Michael Manford McGreer is managing editor of and writes on issues that impact public policy.

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