The Royal Australian College of General Practitioners (RACGP) is urging people to ‘mask up’ to help stop the spread of COVID-19.

In Victoria, the Government has made it mandatory for people over the age of 12, to wear masks or face coverings when in the community. However recent national advice is to wear a mask or face covering in areas of community transmission or where social distancing is difficult, for example; in the supermarket (or any other shop) and on public transport.

While a face mask or covering is not a suit of armour against COVID-19, it can protect you and the people around you from coming into contact with airborne droplets that could spread the virus. However, many consumers who wear glasses are reluctant to wear masks or face coverings because they find their lenses fog up, impairing vision.

Fog is created when warm air hits a cool surface, causing condensation to form. When wearing a mask, warm air from the mouth and nose escapes through the top of the mask and hits the cooler spectacle lenses which causes this fogging.

Ten tips to wear a face mask effectively:

  1. Before you put your mask on, wash your hands for 20 seconds with sanitiser,
  2. Secure the mask strings at the back of your head and neck or slip the elastics around your ears, making sure your mouth and nose are covered,
  3. Fit the flexible band to the bridge of your nose to ensure a secure fit to your face and chin,
  4. Do not touch the front of your mask or allow it to hang around your neck, even when you’re eating or drinking,
  5. If you do touch your mask, wash your hands immediately,
  6. If your mask gets wet or damaged, discard it,
  7. When removing a mask do not touch the front of it,
  8. Single-use masks should be disposed of,
  9. Reuseable masks should be washed after each use, and
  10. Wash your hands immediately after removing your mask.

Seven tips to prevent your glasses from fogging up:

  1. Wear spectacles with an anti-fog coating on the lens
  2. Wash your lenses with soapy water and shake off the excess liquid, then allow them to air dry or gently wipe them off with a soft cloth. The thin film that the soap leaves behind will act as a fog barrier,
  3. Wear contact lenses, taking into consideration the need for careful contact lens hygiene,
  4. Wear a mask with a nose bridge, or one that is shaped to fit the face, to prevent warm air from escaping through the top of the mask,
  5. Pull the mask up higher on the nose, then use your spectacles to seal it and shape it to the face,
  6. Tape the mask down around the bridge of the nose and across the cheeks, using sports or medical tape that is manufactured for use on the skin, and
  7. Even if you are wearing a face mask or shield, you still need to stay safe by maintaining a physical distance of 1.5m from others, regular hand washing, and coughing and sneezing into your elbow.

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