Unexpected way a mask could save you
Masks are now commonplace throughout Melbourne metro areas and the Mitchell shire and may soon be commonplace throughout the country.
Fingers crossed that doesn't have to be the case.
And while it took a while for Australia to embrace face masks to hinder coronavirus outbreaks, it turns out the wearing a mask comes with an extra benefit – it helps us stop touching our faces.
A study published by the Journal of the American Medical Association has found that face masks have been linked to a reduction in people touching their eyes, nose and mouth – one of the key ways of protecting yourself from the coronavirus.
COVID-19 is a respiratory illness that can get into your body through your eyes, nose and mouth.
Touch an infected surface like a door handle then immediately touch your face, be it itching your nose or rubbing your eye, and the virus can pass on to you.
The research, , used footage recorded in public transport stations and parks in China, Japan, South Korea, the United States and western European countries like England, France, Germany, Spain and Italy.
Scientists compared how often people touched their faces before the coronavirus pandemic, from January 2018 to October 2019, and during it, from February to March 2020. The study found that fewer people touched their faces in countries face masks were mandatory in public.
“An increasing number of governments have enacted mandatory mask-wearing policies for the general population in public areas,” said the researchers.
“However, the mechanisms of the preventive effect associated with masks are poorly understood, which has contributed to limited public acceptance of mandatory mask-wearing policies.”
Have you been wearing a mask in public, regardless of the state in which you live?