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Can Face Masks Prevent or Reduce Coughs and Colds?

A cloth face mask is an over-the-counter mask usually made of spandex-like common fabric, most often cotton, worn above the nose and mouth. While physically handicapped or absent, cloth masks remain in use by thousands of dentists, therapists and medical personnel throughout the world every day. For this reason, understanding some of the advantages and disadvantages of this popular cosmetic product may be helpful to those considering its use. Here are several common questions and answers that address several aspects of this popular face covering.

Why use a face coverings? Facial skin care and treatment are important for the prevention and treatment of acne, wrinkles and other visible signs of aging. This is because damaged skin cells cannot effectively produce new collagen and elastin; thus, the skin loses elasticity. Cloth face coverings help overcome these effects by moisturizing the skin and thickening and firming it. A heavy face mask can be worn multiple times each day or as necessary to achieve the desired results.

What types of skin are covered by face masks? Face covers are commonly used on all skin types, though there are some situations in which they are not appropriate. For example, if the face is allergic or has blemishes or open wounds, fabric masks may result in increased discomfort or an allergic reaction. Additionally, if exhalation valves cannot be located behind the nose or mouth, this type of mask may not be a good choice.

Who are the users of face masks? Face masks are generally worn by anyone who needs temporary relief from wind, cold, sweating or any other source of stress. Face masks are also popular among bodybuilders and athletes as they can be worn during practices and competitions while still providing sufficient coverage to avoid overheating. In addition, these cloth-based products are popular among theater actors and stage performers because they are easy to clean between takes. Lastly, professional models and celebrities often wear cloth face masks when appearing on television, in magazine spreads and during photo shoots.

Can face masks help with respiratory droplets? As you may have guessed, face masks can be beneficial to those with breathing problems such as asthma or chronic obstruction. However, they can also help reduce sweat and excess moisture in the scalp, which can be a common problem for individuals with facial hair. Excess moisture in the scalp can contribute to the development of dandruff, which is commonly found in people with oily complexions. Additionally, the drying effect of excess fluid may exacerbate the appearance of fine lines, wrinkles and age spots.

Can face masks to prevent or reduce coughs and colds? It is well-known that colds and coughs are contagious and can spread easily through airborne particles. While most people tend to think of sneezing as a sign of the flu, a cold can actually develop in individuals who are otherwise healthy. By wearing a face mask, you can help minimize the number of airborne particles that make up your coughs and thus reduce their contagious nature.

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