Ask Dr. Nandi: Mask safety concern questions

Posted at 5:34 PM, Sep 09, 2020
and last updated 2020-09-09 17:34:13-04

(WXYZ) — When it comes to masks, are they safe to wear when exercising? And what about kids who play with masks – are there any concerns?

Well, most people can wear a mask and exercise safely. But you do need to be aware of a few things. Masks can alter how much air you breathe in. So just watch how you're feeling and take a rest if you notice you feel lightheaded, dizzy, or have tingling or shortness of breath.

If you have heart or lung conditions, you definitely should exercise at a lower intensity.

Now, regarding the type of mask to wear, cotton tends to work the best. The fabric is typically easier to breathe in and can absorb moisture. But, if you sweat a lot, then bring a second mask because once masks are damp, they’re harder to breathe in.

three of my kids are under the age of 8 so I know how tempting it is for kids to play with masks. The main concern is that the more a child touches a mask, the higher the chance of passing any germs onto it.

So children need to be taught that a mask is for wearing only. It’s not a playtoy. It’s not to be passed around to friends. And they should never put a mask over another child's face. .

Because masks are not for all children. Those two and under should not wear masks because they can’t tell you if they’re getting overheated or having trouble breathing. Or they might not have developed the motor skills that are needed to take the mask off.

So just like teaching your child to wear a seatbelt and a bike helmet for safety reasons, you can do the same when it comes to face masks.

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