Importance of Wearing Masks for Immunocompromised People

Keeping and maintaining a strong, healthy immune system is the best defense against viral infections. Some people seem to never get sick. On the other hand, some people have trouble staying well. People with chronic medical conditions are often said to be immunocompromised. This means they may be more susceptible to infections due to a weakened immune system that cannot defend against disease. This vulnerability, especially during a global pandemic, can cause further health concerns such as stress, loss of sleep, and physical fatigue.

People who are considered immunocompromised have an impaired immune system. Conditions that can weaken the immune system include diabetes, severe liver or kidney problems, cancer, autoimmune diseases like lupus and rheumatoid arthritis, pregnancy, malnutrition, alcoholism, advanced age, and stress. Additionally, certain medications, like steroids and those used for chemotherapy or after an organ transplant, can lower immunity and make people more susceptible to illness. Immunocompromised people may have more frequent, severe, or uncommon infections and recover more slowly than healthy individuals. To make matters worse, a weakened immune system may not show much of a response, resulting in either mild or even absent symptoms.

Face Masks to Protect Against Virus Infection

During the coronavirus spread, it was recommended that healthy people did not need to wear facial masks, but as we learn more about the virus, that recommendation has changed. One of the current recommendations of the CDC is that we all wear cloth face masks in public. These should be worn even if social distancing is possible. The official consensus among health and medical experts is that face masks can help prevent certain viruses and bacteria’s transmission to others. According to the CDC, “masks are a critical preventive measure and are essential in times when social distancing is difficult.”

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Infectious disease expert Dr. Christina Madison says, “Wearing a face mask is the simplest and easiest way to protect yourself and those around you during this global pandemic. However, not all consumer face masks are made equal. Masks should be worn in all public places, especially when you cannot distance yourself from others within indoor spaces physically.”

A cloth face mask is meant to prevent the wearer from spreading an infection to others. If we all wear masks in public, the chances of transmission become significantly less. This is true whether we are infected or not — symptomatic or not. Today, masks are considered the most effective and offer no protection or even cause further harm. The need to reduce exposure by wearing a face mask is even more critical for immunocompromised individuals since they have a greater chance of being infected or becoming infected, and thus spreading infection. This also translates to those who are regularly in close contact with or live with these individuals.

Dr. Madison adds that “Boomer Naturals Face Masks are lab-certified and highly effective with three layers of tightly-woven fabric enhanced with Nano-Silver Technology. There are several things to point out regarding the unique construction of these masks. First is the multi-layer, tightly woven fabric, which meets the World Health Organization standards and repels respiratory droplets. The second is the use of Nano-Silver Technology. We have known for decades about the antimicrobial properties of silver, as it has been used in modern medicine for accelerating wound healing.”

The World Health Organization recommends that masks have at least three layers: an inner layer of absorbent material, such as cotton; a middle layer of non-woven material such as polypropylene; and an outer layer non-absorbent material, such as polyester or a polyester blend. The masks should cover the nose, mouth, and chin securely with elastic loops or ties and should be washable and reusable.

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A Word About Other Masks on the Market

Respirator masks, including FFPs, N95s, and N99s, offer the wearer the most protection against viruses and bacteria in the air. Surgical masks have been hotly debated this year, but mostly over their design and who should be wearing them. Although both masks are highly sought-after, these masks are designed for healthcare workers in specialized settings like hospital wards — not the general public. The masks are fitted to each user to form a tight seal around the nose and mouth, and some have a one-way valve that allows easier exhalation. For this reason, bandanas are also not a great choice. A bandana’s construction does not cover the face effectively, leaving space around the nose area exposed by now fitting snug. Additionally, masks with these valves are not recommended since they do not filter what the wearer breathes out and offer no protection to people around you.

Protect Yourself and Others

Whether you are immunocompromised or not, it is best practice to take all necessary precautions against the spread of COVID-19. If you have a weakened immune system, the best way to protect yourself will be to invest in high-quality cloth masks that adhere to WHO and CDC guidelines like those made by Boomer Naturals. Boomer Naturals Nano-Silver Technology is one of the best and most affordable options in today’s market.

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