Wearing a face mask often helps people feel protected and reassured. A surgical face mask can help keep you from being exposed to or transmitting certain infectious diseases. The World Health Organization recommends using surgical masks only if you have a fever, cough or other respiratory symptoms, or if you are well but caring for someone with a respiratory illness. In the latter case, the mask should be worn when you are within six feet of the ill person.
Although the N95 surgical mask should be reserved for healthcare professionals, everyday citizens can create their own face masks to trap larger respiratory droplets. Such homemade masks should fit snugly on the face, so airborne particles won’t leak out or in through the sides.
While there is a global shortage of protective masks, people in far-flung areas around the world are getting creative in making their own. Here are a number of examples of people wearing masks during the coronavirus pandemic.
Must-read stories from the L.A. Times
Get the day's top news with our Today's Headlines newsletter, sent every weekday morning.
You may occasionally receive promotional content from the Los Angeles Times.