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How The Media Construed The Study Involving Neck Gaiters

Julia Tucker

Posted on August 28, 2020 15:28

1 user

This is a prime example of how the media can twist and turn things. It is always best to do your own research.

Who knew that in 2020 we would be spending a portion of our time arguing about which masks are best? This has become the new reality. According to MIT Medical, there was a recent study conducted by Duke University that ranked neck gaiters, also commonly referred to as buffs, as least likely to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets.

A neck gaiter is a piece of fabric that rests on the neck and can be pulled up to cover one’s mouth and nose. It has gained popularity over the last couple of months with individuals opting to wear a neck gaiter over a regular mask. One of the main reasons is because it is made of light fabric, which is more appealing during the hot summer months, especially while running or doing physical exercise.

Martin Fischer, a chemistry professor, decided to test 14 different types of masks being used around the world today. His experiment concluded that an N95 mask was the best type of face covering to wear. A surgical mask came in second, and a cloth mask with a filter came in third. The overall goal of this experiment was to determine how well the masks can block droplets from an individual’s mouth and nose while speaking, coughing, or sneezing.

The media got a hold of this study and blew it out of proportion. Indeed, the neck gaiter did have worst results than the other masks, as it did end up with tiny respiratory droplets on it. However, Fischer did not presume that a neck gaiter is less effective than no mask at all, which is what the media is reporting. In fact, Fischer commented on the reports from the media saying his intentions were not to steer people away from using the neck gaiters or to convince them that they do not protect against COVID-19.

After hearing the reports from the media, many people across the country started wondering if they should throw out their neck gaiters. According to ScienceNews, the answer is no because “droplet number doesn’t necessarily equate to risk of transmission.”

Even though there have been many mask debates this year, I personally feel like wearing some type of covering over your mouth and nose is better than wearing no covering at all. We were made aware months ago which types of masks were the most effective -- the N95 and surgical masks. We also know that we must continuously wash our cloth masks and dispose of our temporary masks after wearing them multiple times.

If you need to go somewhere and all you have is a neck gaiter, I would certainly recommend wearing it over going maskless.

Julia Tucker

Posted on August 28, 2020 15:28

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Source: WBRZ

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