Mask is our most important defence against the deadly virus. The government has recommended that people should wear a mask even when at home, and this could save us from getting infected at home by asymptomatic people.

Dr. VK Paul, chief of India’s COVID-19 task force, recommended people to wear masks even at indoor spaces to break the chain of spread. “It’s time people start wearing masks inside their homes as well,” he said in a statement issued on Monday. India on Monday recorded over 3,20,000 fresh cases and over 2,700 deaths.

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But how will it help?

The virus mainly spreads through respiratory droplets of a person, which travels in air when a person coughs, shouts, sneezes or even sings. When the particles spread in the air, it can easily be breathed in or land in another person’s mouth or nose.

However, the critical part is that a large number of people are not showing any symptoms, and those people unknowingly transmit the infection at home even faster. Dr. Paul on Monday’s presser emphasised that wearing a mask at home is crucial as even talking can cause the transmission. It’s the primary reason why families even though staying indoors are getting infected from the virus, he added.

During the ongoing wave, a lot of people are showing severe symptoms like fever, sore throat, breathlessness and more and wearing masks at home can avoid transmission of virus to high-risk groups that might need hospitalisation after catching COVID-19.

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Citing data, the government said that wearing mask at home can significantly save people from getting infected. According to the data by North Carolina Department of Health and Human Service, the risk is as low as 1.5% when wearing mask. While, it increases to 5% if an infected person wears mask while uninfected person remains unmasked.

However, the risk goes up to 30% when an uninfected person wears a mask, while an infected person does not. While when both infected and uninfected persons remain unmasked, the risk is as high as 90%

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Looking at the ongoing crisis in India, as health infrastructure has crashed with people dying due to non-availability of beds, oxygen and life-saving drugs. It becomes more important than ever to wear mask at all times, whether home or outdoors, which will help in containing the spread of COVID-19 virus. 

India on Monday recorded more than 3,50,000 daily cases and over 2,800 fatalities in just 24 hours. Wear mask and save a lot of lives including those who stay at home with you.