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|FAQ - Cloth Face Coverings|Solano Public Health is strongly recommending community members to wear cloth face coverings when in public. This action will help slow the spread of the novel coronavirus in our community and reduce the number of people infected.
Why should we use cloth face coverings?
The primary role of a face covering is to reduce the release of infectious particles into the air when someone speaks, coughs or sneezes, including someone who has COVID-19 but feels well. Covering your face is about helping others. By covering your face when you go out for essential reasons, you are protecting vulnerable community members.
Who should wear cloth face coverings?
Individuals are highly recommended to cover their nose and mouth with a cloth face covering. Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2 years old, as well as anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. For younger children, parents and caregivers should be supervising the use of cloth face coverings. Parents and caregivers should use their judgement on whether or not a mask can be worn by their children, depending on the child's age and maturity level in understanding the purpose of face coverings and keeping the face coverings on.
Situations in which children should not wear a face covering include:
• Children under age 2 years old, due to risks of suffocation
• If the only face covering available is a possible choking or strangulation hazard
• If the child has difficulty breathing with the face covering or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cover without assistance
• If wearing the face covering causes the child to increase risk of getting exposed to the virus because they are touching their face more frequently
What types of cloth face coverings can I use?
Use cloth face coverings such as as a bandana, scarf, towel, or other piece of cloth or fabric, when leaving home. Do not use N-95 masks and surgical masks – these are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.
In what places should I use face coverings?
Solano Public Health recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where social distancing may be difficult to maintain.
Wear face coverings in public settings:
• While inside or waiting in line to enter an essential business, like a grocery store or pharmacy
• When seeking health care
There is no need to wear a face covering when:
• At home
• In your car or solely with members of your household
• Hiking, running, biking or walking outdoors where 6 feet distance can be applied between yourself and others outside of your own household
How do I know I’m wearing a cloth face covering correctly?
Cloth face coverings should:
• Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
• Be secured with ties or ear loops
• Include multiple layers of fabric
• Allow for breathing without restriction
• Be able to be machine wash and dried without damage or change to shape
Should cloth face coverings be washed or otherwise cleaned regularly? How often?
Cloth face coverings should be washed frequently. Ideally, wash them after each use.
How does one safely remove a used cloth face covering?
Individuals should be careful not to touch their eyes, nose, and mouth when removing their face covering and wash hands immediately after removing. Always wash your hands, or use hand sanitizer, before and after touching your face or face coverings.
For more information:
CDC Recommendation on Cloth Face Coverings
HealthyChildren.org Cloth Face Coverings for Children during COVID-19
How to Make Your Own Face Coverings