Double Masking Could Reduce Exposure To COVID-19 by Nearly 95%: Study

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Double masking: Amid the surge in COVID-19 cases all across the world, many health experts have been encouraging the usage of two face masks, popularly called “double masking”. This practice can create a stronger barrier against the COVID-19 virus.

Double masking, when done with both surgical and cloth masks can prevent the leakage of air and fits the shape of the face better. Many studies by the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) have found the positive effects of double masking.

These studies have found that wearing a double mask, surgical and cloth – reduces the exposure of the face to the COVID-19 virus by nearly 95 per cent.

In a study called “Fitted Filtration Efficiency of Double Masking During the COVID-19 Pandemic” published in JAMA Internal Medicine Journal, it has been found that wearing a procedure (surgical) mask underneath a cloth mask has the best effect in comparison to any other combinations evaluated.

Wearing double surgical masks or layering them under reusable cloth mask is consistent with minimising leakage between the mask and face, including the bridge of the nose, says the study.

As many studies and CDC have already stressed the importance of double masking, here are some necessary information on double masking you should remember:

1. Knot the ear loops of the surgical mask where they attach to the mask’s edges and then tuck in and flatten the extra material close to the face.

2. CDC records that an unknotted surgical mask blocked only 56.1 per cent, while a cloth mask blocked only 51.4 per cent cough particles.

3. A knot and tuck surgical mask blocked 77 per cent.

4. However, a combination of a cloth mask a surgical mask blocked cough particles up to 85.4 per cent.

What are the Dos and Don’ts of double masking?

– Ensure you can breathe right.

– The double mask allows you to talk freely.

– Wear the mask at home and walk about for some time before you step out to assess for and comfort.


– Wear two disposable or surgical masks at the same time.

– Use chemical disinfectants on masks.

– Use your masks if they are visibly damaged or soiled.

How to know if your mast fits right?

– When you breathe in, your mask should press in with airflow.

– If your glasses fog up, it means air is escaping.

– Stand in front of a mirror and breath out forcefully. If you blink, that means air hot your eyelids and is escaping around the mask.