No scientific proof that masks harm children’s health

There is no scientific evidence showing that masks harm children’s health despite unsubstantiated claims suggesting otherwise.

Among the unfounded arguments: Masks can promote germs if they get wet or cause unhealthy levels of carbon dioxide. But experts say washing masks regularly keeps them safe and clean.

Some argue that young children lack important visual and social cues that enhance learning and development when their classmates and teachers wear masks. But others note that children with visual or hearing impairments learn to cope and other children can too.

“We don’t know for sure that masks do not have developmental effects, but we do know that there are side effects in not trying to stop transmission,” said Dr Emily Levy, intensive care and infection control expert at Mayo Clinic Children’s Center. .

There is strong evidence that masking children in schools can reduce the transmission of COVID-19 to other children and adults.

In 166 schools in Maricopa County, Arizona, COVID-19 outbreaks are twice as common in people without a mask warrant, said Dr. Rebecca Sunenshine, medical director of the county’s public health department.

Studies in school districts in other states, including North Carolina, have also found that masking can significantly reduce rates of transmission of COVID-19, especially when combined with physical distancing and d ‘other preventive measures.

“One thing we know about prevention, about infection control, is that there is no one intervention that will win out,” said Dr Joshua Schaffzin, director of prevention and control infections at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital.

But he noted that there is a lot of evidence that masking is a key part of making schools safer.

To avoid skin irritation, doctors suggest washing masks regularly, making sure they fit properly, and choosing masks made of soft, breathable fabric.

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