Face Masks for Seniors: If Your Mask Doesn't Have These 4 Things, Get a New One

September 13, 2021

The same COVID recommendations apply to seniors as they do to younger people, right? Wear mouth-to-nose protection. Wash your hands regularly and thoroughly. Follow cough and sneeze etiquette. Stay 1.5 to 2 meters away from each other, especially indoors. When it comes to face masks, however, seniors can have special needs. What are the best masks for senior citizens anyway? Honestly, the best mask is the one you will actually wear.

“Besides, maintaining social distancing and sanitizing your hands from time to time, most health experts have recommended the usage of the best face mask for maximum protection.” Senior Outlook Today 

Find the Face Mask with the Best Material

Did you know that certain fabrics are best used for each part of a face mask?  Double-knit cotton, quilting cotton, knit nylon, or polyester satin are best for the outer layer. Double-knit cotton, quilting cotton, or simple-weave silk for the inner layer. The silk is important because it sits closest to your skin.

For the outer layer of a mask, nylon and polyester repel water. That’s important, too! It means harmful droplets will be kept from penetrating. For the inner layer of a mask, cotton and silk feel comfortable, breath well, and help keep away moisture. 

The fabric is also important when you think about face mask breathability. A breathable face mask is a good face mask. For example, fabrics such as polyester and high thread-count cotton are not very breathable. 

Your face mask fabric, when reusable, should also be durable and washable. Especially if you have paid thirty dollars for it. Disposable face masks may cost as little as twenty-five cents. They should still be of good, medical quality. A paper towel held over your nose with a rubber band is not a good alternative. Keep your eyes open for these fabrics and considerations when choosing a face mask.

Mask suggestion: Doset Cloth Face Masks $16.00 for 3 masks

“If you, like many Americans, cheered and put your box of masks away in May, now is the time to wash and dry them—and perhaps update your stash. A good face mask is a critical tool to help slow the spread of Covid-19.” Wired 

Ensure Your Face Mask Properly Fits Your Face

Anything you need to wear needs to fit, right? Pants, shoes, hats, and face masks. An ill-fitting mask is uncomfortable and will make communication difficult. Fit is important not only for comfort. If your face mask doesn’t fit properly it won’t do its job of protecting you and others. In addition, you have to wear your face mask properly.

What do we mean by properly? Well, a face mask will not work if people are wearing it halfway down their face. Or on their head. Or hanging from one ear. You may have seen people wearing two masks. This is often the case for men who have a beard. Wearing two disposable masks may not be a comfortable choice for you. It may also limit breathability. 

And what about your ears? Look at the material used for the ear loops. Is the length correct for your ears? Does the face mask fit over your ears, or is it secured behind your head? 

Your focus should always be to wear a mask correctly. The most comfortable face mask may not be the safest one. Choose a design that offers a good seal around your nose and mouth. You will then avoid inhaling or exhaling unwanted particles.

Mask suggestion: KN95 Face Mask $40.00 for 30 masks

“The great problem concerning masks, though, is not quality control; it is that many people either refuse to wear them or wear them inappropriately.” McGill 

How Well Can You Communicate While Wearing a Face Mask?

Let’s talk about the last time you tried to talk while wearing a mask. Were you able to hear what your friend said? Were they able to hear you? Did your mask drop below your nose? Face masks can dampen and filter sound, making it difficult to speak. 

Another downside is that masks remove cues we use when we talk. No one sees our mouth! If we have hearing, speech, or breathing difficulties, these are added to an already muffled conversation. On top of hearing someone, it’s nice to see them. Does anyone else have the problem of fogged-up glasses while wearing a mask? Is that you too? It happens to most of us.

All the more reason to try different masks to find one that allows you to speak and others to hear you. Here is an idea: choose a stricter mask to wear when shopping and in the street where a conversation is less likely. Wear a more comfortable mask when you are in a room conversing with family, or with a trusted, vaccinated, friend or colleague. 

“Face masks can help folks avoid exposure to germs, viruses, and pollutants. Although they don’t seal completely, they can help protect the wearer if worn properly. Make sure you do your research before making a purchase.” Seniors Matter  

Mask suggestion: Bilio Mask $38.00 This mask will not fog up your glasses

Your Face Mask Should Fit Your Face AND Your Budget!

When COVID began spreading out from China in the Spring of 2020, face masks were worth their weight in gold. At one time you could pay eight dollars for a single disposable mask! Thankfully there now appear to be enough masks for everyone.

Your choice of face mask should not only be comfortable on your face but also fit your wallet. There are two types of face masks to consider – disposable and reusable masks. Disposable masks can now be purchased in packages of ten or fifty. For these, you can expect to pay perhaps a quarter a mask. 

For the best reusable face mask, thirty dollars is not unusual, but you can purchase them for much less. Before the availability of disposable masks, many people produced masks for sale on Etsy and eBay. The gift of a face mask to family and friends kept many grandmothers busy, too!

Mask suggestion: Disposable 3-Ply Face Masks (50 Pack) $14.00 

Can Masks Prevent the Transmission of COVID-19? How Should I Properly Wear My Face Mask? Are There Face Masks that Should Not be Worn?

So many questions! It has been a very hard couple of years. After a long life, Seniors are now dealing with this. We’re here for you! We also want to make sure you get the very best advice. 

Three trustworthy sources of information are available below at the click of your mouse. We recommend you use official sources when you have questions. This is always safer than trusting hearsay and gossip. 

As always, feel free to subscribe to our newsletter if you found this on social media and get back to living your best life!

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