1. Cloth face coverings are recommended for the general public and those who do not work in the health care sector.
2. The public is not required to wear surgical masks or N-95 respirators.
3. Surgical masks or N-95 respirators are reserved for health care professionals due to shortage of supplies.
4. DO NOT SHARE CLOTH FACE COVERING with someone.
5. DO NOT TEST OR TOUCH OTHER FACE COVERINGS before selecting your own when you want to buy.6. Face covering alone may not prevent you from coronavirus when you are exposed. It is an additional measure to the precautions you already have. Still maintain the recommended physical distance of 2m and wash your hands regularly with soap and water.
"CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores and pharmacies), especially in areas of significant community-based transmission."Before we go into details of how to wear a cloth face covering, let us consider why you need to wear one.
There are some people who are infected with coronavirus but they are not aware because symptoms have not developed. When such people talk, sneeze or cough around you without properly covering their mouths, you can breath in the droplets which contain the virus. More so, it can even land directly on your mouth or face, depending on your distance.
So, when you and the person use the cloth face covering, in addition to physical distance of 2m, you have reduced your chance of being infected.To learn how to make your cloth face covering at home, click here.
Recommendations for Use of Cloth Face Covering
1. Use it whenever you are leaving your house. The government of Nigeria has directed this mandatory face covering in public places, public vehicles, motor parks, construction sites, banks, neighbourhood markets, supermarkets, at work, etc.
2. You may not wear it if you are alone in your private car or at home, or in office.
3. Use whenever you want to talk to someone in the public or talk to someone who is sick. Wear yours while they wear theirs.
4. Stay at home to avoid prolonged use of face coverings. Complications can develop in people with respiratory problems.
5. Some elderly persons may experience difficulty in breathing with face coverings. Keep such people at home to avoid prolonged usage.
6. Do not touch your face covering after putting them on to avoid contamination.
7. Children under age 2 years should not wear face coverings. Keep them from meeting people to avoid possible coronavirus infection.
8. Face covering may cause suffocation or asphyxiation for some people. If you become dizzy while using face covering, isolate yourself into a well ventilated environment or keep a minimum of 2m from people, remove the covering and take in fresh air. Sit down for some minutes if possible.
Do not touch the covering with your hand. To remove, take the ear loop or strap from your ears. Wash the covering properly with soap and dry before re-using it.
How to Dispose Face Coverings
Bad or unwanted cloth face coverings should be properly disposed to avoid spread of coronavirus. To dispose, safely remove and put inside a plastic bag (poly bag), then tie very well before disposing in line with approved waste disposal practices in your area.
For more information, visit www.covid19.ncdc.gov.ng and www.cdc.gov#Staysafe. Wash your hands regularly with soap and water. Maintain physical distance of at least 2m in public places.