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Double-Masking Offers More Protection Against COVID-19, CDC Says

WASHINGTON (WJZ) -- New guidelines this week from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirm double-masking -- wearing two face coverings -- is much safer.

Johns Hopkins epidemiologist Dr. Caitlin Rivers discussed the guidance Thursday and says two things matter for performance, filtration and fit.

"That means adding a second layer can be helpful for filtration," Dr. Rivers said. "And making sure the mask is snug around your mouth or improving the fit is really helpful."


"There are also new options available to consumers called mask fitters. Small reusable devices that cinch a cloth or medical mask," Dr. Rochelle Walensky, of the CDC, said.

You may have something at your home that can serve as a mask fitter. Nylon pantyhose, for instance.

The CDC says, if you cut a sleeve of it, you can place it over your mask. It may look a little funny, but it can significantly improve protection by fitting the mask tighter around the face.

"I think people are looking for ways to protect themselves," Dr. Rivers said.

Wearing a cloth mask over a surgical mask could be as effective as an N95. Worn together, they can block more than 92% of particles.

Jet Lowe says, until he gets vaccinated, he'll continue to wear two masks inside public spaces.

"It makes me feel more secure when I go to the grocery store, and I don't find it any more difficult to breathe," Lowe said.

For the latest information on coronavirus go to the Maryland Health Department's website or call 211. You can find all of WJZ's coverage on coronavirus in Maryland here.

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