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Meme Facts

150 Microns = Human Hair

25 Microns = Lint, Particles You Can See

10 Microns = Average Dust, Small Lint, Pollen

5 – 10 Microns = Average Dust, Plant Spores, Mold

1 – 5 Microns = Bacteria, Light Dust, Animal Dander

.3 – 1 Microns = Bacteria, Some Viruses, Smoke (N95)

.001 – .2 Microns = Viruses

Three different protection face masks. Corona virus prevention.
Three different protection face masks. Corona virus prevention.

Masks Stop Viruses!

Even though the COVID-19 virus is small enough to fit through an N95 mask they still trap more than 95% of particles of a .007 micron diameter.


Because the particles collide with the fibers of the masks. Thicker or a double layer is better. Even a lousy mask will stop some virus particles. If you get your mask damp, it will be more effective. The longer you wear the mask, the better it gets at filtering. Sounds stupid, but it is true. The other particles add mass or surface area for things to stick to and the moisture exhaled from your breath makes more particles stick to the mask fibers and the other matter, but some can get in!

It is also helpful to have another elastic material like pantyhose over the mask to press it firmly against the face. This helps close the gaps at the sides. If you really want the mask to fit securely, get rid of facial hair (beards and mustaches for the facial hair unchallenged).

Full disclosure: I choose not to wear a mask in public unless I’m required to, because the more accurate data sets clearly point to this COVID-19 as being slightly more fatal than influenza. You’re welcome to disagree, but there is enough data to clearly show this. If I am in the presence of the elderly or a healthcare worker, I wear a mask. Actually, I just stay away from the elderly all together.

Another problem I personally have wearing masks is the restrictive breathing that starts to occur when they get both dirty and moisture from my breath dampens the material. It does get hard to breath. I start out with them in dusty environments but inevitably have to remove them after the restrictive behavior begins. If I have enough of them I’ll keep swapping the used for new, otherwise I do without. I seem to have this problem more than most people do. To each there own though. Wear a mask if you want or not. But don’t get uppity about others who choose not to. It’s their body right?

As far as hypercapnia and viral spread to the brain from wearing a mask, the jury is still out. I’ve read some of those studies on both ends and not one of them is conclusive in either direction to make their case. This is why I don’t have any resource links to any of that research here. One guy has references without links and having looked them up myself, I found that some even support the opposite side of his position on the issue. He clearly didn’t read the references and looked at the title only or he wouldn’t have used them. Another claiming that masks can’t cause hypercapnia has three references that if you look at them, they draw no conclusions this way or that way. What I do know, is that they effect my ability to breath, and that’s all I need to know.

UPDATE: From a respected physician

Choose for yourself and leave others alone!

Meme References

Reference TitleReference Link
Can Masks Capture Coronavirus Particles?From
A cluster randomised trial of cloth masks compared with medical masks in healthcare workersFrom:
How Long Do Pollution Masks Last? | New DataFrom
Viable viral efficiency of N95 and P100 respirator filters at constant and cyclic flow.From
Respirator Performance against Nanoparticles under Simulated Workplace Activities.From
Comparison of nanoparticle filtration performance of NIOSH-approved and CE-marked particulate filtering facepiece respirators.From
Total inward leakage measurement of particulates for N95 filtering facepiece respirators–a comparison study.From
Nanoparticle filtration performance of filtering facepiece respirators and canister/cartridge filters.From
Evaluation of the rationale for concurrent use of N95 filtering facepiece respirators with loose-fitting powered air-purifying respirators during aerosol-generating medical procedures.From