HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO) —Wearing a mask has been a new addition to our lives for the majority of 2020 and well into the new year.
New COVID variants are popping up across the world, health leaders say double masking may be a way to prevent getting sick.
“Using two masks, you’ll be adding another layer. So potentially it could protect you better,” said Dr. Jose Campo Maldonado.
He works at the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) and said layering offers more protection.
“People are doing in hospitals. You use the N95 but a lot of people use a surgical mask on top of that.”
Doubling masks could prevent another shortage of those high-quality masks used in hospitals.
Dr. Anthony Fauci sees nothing wrong with doubling up.
“You know it likely does because this is a physical covering to prevent droplets and virus to get in. So if you have a physical covering with one layer, if you put another layer on it just makes common sense that it likely would be more effective,” said Fauci.
It also depends on the fabric; some materials are better than others.
“Certain types of cotton may be better. Not all masks, like the shirt, may not be as good. The fleece may not work as well as the type of masks the CDC recommends,” said Dr. Maldonado.
Doctors are still waiting for more research on the effectiveness of double masking but say it’s better than nothing at all.
Health officials say even though vaccines are being distributed, more research is needed to be done on emerging variants and doses between vaccines.
Research has proved wearing a mask, social distancing and frequent handwashing are still the best tools to prevent catching and spreading COVID-19.