Wearing a mask is the new reality – and responsibility – for all Americans. When you wear a face covering, the risk of spreading COVID-19 reduces drastically, protecting those who are more at-risk and vulnerable to poor health outcomes, such as adults over 65 or those who are immunocompromised.
It’s also ok to acknowledge that wearing a mask is sometimes uncomfortable and unsettling – seeing a friendly smile from a stranger is something we all look forward to experiencing again, and hopefully not too long from now. Until then, here are a few tips to help make mask-wearing a more tolerable duty.
- If you experience anxiety or claustrophobia while wearing a mask, practice wearing one for short periods of time at home in order to build a tolerance, both physically and mentally. Wearing masks that are 100% cotton may also help to eliminate heat build up that can result from synthetic materials.
- Take frequent “mask-breaks” when you are outside and safely 6ft away from others, or when you are alone in the car.
- If you wear glasses and frequently experience “mask fog,” try washing your lenses with soapy water, shaving cream or anti-fog treatment (though be aware these may remove protective coatings over time if done repeatedly.)
- If you feel that you experience headaches while wearing a mask, this is likely due to pressure from the ear loops- not a build up of CO2. Try using ties or connect your ear loops with paper clips behind your head. Also be sure to wash your masks regularly with unscented detergent.
Thank you for helping to keep the spread of COVID-19 lower in our community! You may not realize it each time you wear a face covering, but you just may be saving a life.
Barrier Islands Free Medical Clinic is a free clinic in Charleston, SC, that provides free medical care to eligible patients, just like any family practitioner or internist. The Free Clinic serves uninsured adults living at or below 299 % of the Federal poverty level who live or work on Johns, James, & Wadmalaw Island or Folly Beach, or serve the Hospitality Industry of Downtown Charleston. You can follow us on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and YouTube.