Some also wear a mask outside as a precaution against the coronavirus. What is mandatory in shops and public transport is noticeable in parks and in the forest. Is it still useful?
When the sun shines and the temperatures climb, people are driven out of the house. Some wear their FFP2 masks to protect against that Coronavirus then also in the open air, even if you are out and about on wide streets or in parks. In most cases it is not even prescribed there. Does it make sense anyway?
Claim: If you really want to protect yourself from Corona, you also have to wear an FFP2 mask outside.
Rating: Not used.
Facts: Nationwide, either simple operating theaters or particle filters must be used in public transport and in shops FFP2 Masks be worn. The former primarily protect the person opposite, the latter also protect the wearer themselves.
Experts have long agreed: the risk of corona infection is much higher indoors than in the fresh air. Nevertheless, some people there also pull their FFP2 masks over their noses and mouths.
Do aerosol clouds also form outdoors?
The reason for this is probably the fear of getting caught in a so-called aerosol cloud. This forms in everyone by exhaling in front of the mouth and can contain coronaviruses in infected people. When people talk to each other, they will Aerosols blown in the face of the interlocutor. While viruses can collect in unventilated rooms, the exhaled air in the open air is quickly diluted and transported away, according to the Society for Aerosol Research (GAeF) in Cologne.
The amount of viruses that you might get off in passing is not enough for an infection, says the advisor to the European Medicines Agency Ema recently to Deutschlandfunk Kultur. “Jogging, running, hiking, walking, I consider that to be absolutely harmless.”
Be careful with longer conversations
The GAeF also gives the all-clear in its position paper: “In the open air there are almost no infections caused by aerosol particles.” However, caution should be exercised in groups in which no minimum distances are observed and / or no masks are worn – for example during longer conversations.
So far, for the Robert Koch Institute (RKI), people who stand together with an infected person for longer than 15 minutes without any protection and at a distance of less than 1.5 meters are considered to be contact persons with a “higher risk of infection”.
Damp masks can reduce the protective effect
The Federal Institute for Drugs and Medical Devices (BfArM) writes: “A moistened mask should be removed and changed.”
According to the Fraunhofer Institute for Industrial Mathematics in Kaiserslautern, there is also the risk of a so-called infection bridge between the wearer and the environment: In the case of moist material, even with FFP models, for example, coughing or sneezing could throw droplets from the outer surface of the mask into the environment .
In principle, from the manufacturer’s point of view, FFP2 masks are not intended for reuse. According to experts from the Münster University of Applied Sciences, who have been studying these models for months, masks that have been moistened with breath can also be reprocessed up to five times – by drying them in the air for at least a week.