Aside from face masks being ineffectual in protecting from viral infections, there are legitimate and legal reasons not to wear face masks.
- Face masks may reduce your blood oxygen level. Depending upon your health, this could be serious. This is most likely for people who have or are predisposed to breathing issues, like a smoker, those who are obese, or have COPD or asthma, stroke victim, cardiac patients, and diabetics. You would need a pulse oximeter to check your blood oxygen level and to determine the impact a face mask has upon it. But if you have asthma or any breathing issue, ask to be exempt. Researchers claim that the N95 face mask can redcue oxygen intake by 5 percent to 20 percent. That is significant.
- Anyone exercising should NOT wear a face mask. This will lower your blood oxygen levels and increase your blood carbon dioxide levels while exercising, which can pose health problems.
Sweating while exercising will get the face mask damp, making it subsequentially harder to breathe through the mask, exacerbating lower blood oxygen levels and increased carbon dioxide levels. Having a wet mask will also promote the growth of bacteria and microorganisms, which can also affect health.
Surgical masks used in surgery DO NOT protect from viral infections. Even the manufacturers of the mask have made this clear on the box of the masks, stating that the mask does not protect against viruses.
Homemade Cloth Mask
If you think those homemade cloth masks are any better, think again. Aside from the science of size above, according to the Pubmed.gov study, cloth masks will increase your likelihood of infection. “Moisture retention, reuse of cloth masks and poor filtration may result in increased risk of infection.