How to put on and take off a mask safely just like the doctor

National

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — How often do you see people adjust their masks by pinching the center of it and pulling it up? Most of us are guilty of that. They tend to slide down and move around when you talk.

Turns out, there is a right way to put on and take off a face mask. According to doctors, masks are great tools in stopping the spread of COVID-19 if used correctly.

You may be touching your face mask constantly throughout the day without even realizing it. That’s a big no-no. The World Health Organization put out an online flyer that explains the front of the mask is the contaminated zone.

Doctors say the front area of the mask could be covered in the very virus you are trying to keep away. Think about it — it’s the protective barrier we’re all wearing for each other; its purpose is to catch the particles.

You likely know by now that the mask has to be over your nose and mouth to do its job. Putting it on and taking it off safely is key. Doctors and nurses, for instance, are trained in the donning and doffing procedures. The rest of us, though, not so much.

The experts over at the CDC have guidelines about this. They show you should wash your hands with soap before touching and putting on your mask for the day. When you take it off, use the ear loops. Don’t grab the front.

Check out this video of UT Physicians showing the correct donning and doffing procedure.

Guidelines also indicate hanging a mask around your neck or setting it on your forehead are counterproductive.

Once you take it off, immediately put it in a closed bin or throw it away. According to the WHO, single-use masks should never be reused.

If you touch the mask, don’t do it, but if you do, you’ve really got to wash your hands.

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