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Tags Coronavirus , medical issues

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Old 18th September 2022, 08:01 PM   #121
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Biden: ‘The pandemic is over’
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Old 19th September 2022, 08:57 AM   #122
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Originally Posted by Puppycow View Post
Huzzah!

Sent from my SM-G996U using Tapatalk
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Old 19th September 2022, 10:16 AM   #123
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I'm getting my newstyle booster on Friday, and after that I think I'll return to using just a cloth mask in public rather than the N95. But that's as far as I'm willing to go just yet. I tend to caution, and also I look really sexy in a mask. And it means I don't have to shave so frequently!
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Old 19th September 2022, 09:05 PM   #124
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Do cloth masks do anything at all? There's an in-between option which is disposable surgical masks.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art...PMC7510705/#R4
Quote:
The filtration, effectiveness, fit, and performance of cloth masks are inferior to those of medical masks and respirators. Cloth mask use should not be mandated for healthcare workers, who should as a priority be provided proper respiratory protection. Cloth masks are a more suitable option for community use when medical masks are unavailable. Protection provided by cloth masks may be improved by selecting appropriate material, increasing the number of mask layers, and using those with a design that provides filtration and fit. Cloth masks should be washed daily and after high-exposure use by using soap and water or other appropriate methods.
The only published randomized controlled trial compared the use of cloth masks against "medical masks" in healthcare workers.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4420971/
Quote:
Hospital wards were randomised to: medical masks, cloth masks or a control group (usual practice, which included mask wearing). Participants used the mask on every shift for 4 consecutive weeks.
Results

The rates of all infection outcomes were highest in the cloth mask arm, with the rate of ILI statistically significantly higher in the cloth mask arm (relative risk (RR)=13.00, 95% CI 1.69 to 100.07) compared with the medical mask arm. Cloth masks also had significantly higher rates of ILI compared with the control arm. An analysis by mask use showed ILI (RR=6.64, 95% CI 1.45 to 28.65) and laboratory-confirmed virus (RR=1.72, 95% CI 1.01 to 2.94) were significantly higher in the cloth masks group compared with the medical masks group. Penetration of cloth masks by particles was almost 97% and medical masks 44%.
I'm not anti-mask, I'm wearing one right now (a disposable surgical-type mask). I just think that most cloth masks probably have no practical value as far as preventing infection. They may be fashionable however.
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Old 20th September 2022, 05:09 AM   #125
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I wore face-fitted FFP3 masks for two and a half years and didn't catch anything. One afternoon's lack of rigour on holiday, and I caught it.

My friend was wearing FFP2s, and said to me at one point, I know your masks are better, but you're getting the mask tangled up with your glasses and it takes time to get it on and off. Wouldn't you be better with the easier FFP2s for less hazardous situations? She was getting hers on and off very quickly and it seemed very comfortable. I said I saw her point, I was just using what I had, and what I was used to.

Well, we both got the virus at the same time, no difference between the mask protection as it happened. But mine had an exhalation valve, making it useless to protect other people from me. Because of that I bought a box of FFP2s without exhalation valves in the village chemist. Much cheaper than the FFP3s I wear, much more convenient and more comfortable.

I'm using the FFP2s now if I just have to pop into a shop for a few minutes, things like that. I'll still use the FFP3s for indoor events with a lot of people, and major shopping expeditions. But really, the FFP2s are probably adequate for ordinary social use. My friend's FFP2 protected her just as well as my FFP3 protected me, until both of them didn't.

I was surprised by how cheap the FFP2s were - £4.99 for a box of fifteen, compared to about £6 for a single FFP3. That's only 33p per mask for the FFP2s, and you can reuse them often if you rest each mask for a few days between use.

Honestly, I don't know why anyone messes around with cloth masks, or even those useless surgical masks. FFP2s seem to do the job, they fit well, they're comfortable, they're easy to take off and on and they're cheap. (I think you call them N95s in America?)
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Old 20th September 2022, 05:20 AM   #126
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Honestly, I don't know why anyone messes around with cloth masks, or even those useless surgical masks. FFP2s seem to do the job, they fit well, they're comfortable, they're easy to take off and on and they're cheap. (I think you call them N95s in America?)
And they are disposable - especially if you sneeze while wearing one. A word of advice - try not to. Yuck.
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Old 20th September 2022, 05:25 AM   #127
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I dread to think what happens when you sneeze!

That's another point though. It takes real skill to wear them wrongly. You pretty much can't pull them down so your nose - the bit you normally breathe through! - isn't covered.
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Old 20th September 2022, 05:29 AM   #128
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Originally Posted by Puppycow View Post
Do cloth masks do anything at all? There's an in-between option which is disposable surgical masks.

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/art...PMC7510705/#R4


The only published randomized controlled trial compared the use of cloth masks against "medical masks" in healthcare workers.
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4420971/


I'm not anti-mask, I'm wearing one right now (a disposable surgical-type mask). I just think that most cloth masks probably have no practical value as far as preventing infection. They may be fashionable however.
A cloth mask isn't as good as an N95 mask, but it's better than no mask at all. I thought it was clear from context in my post above that I was considering a gradual reduction in safety measures as the pandemic winds down, rather than a sudden complete abandonment.
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Old 20th September 2022, 05:33 AM   #129
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My point is that if you're going to put on a mask at all, why downgrade from an FFP2 at all? I can't think of one single advantage to anyone of wearing a cloth mask or a surgical mask.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:15 AM   #130
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
I wore face-fitted FFP3 masks for two and a half years ...

Haha, I didn't know you could get bespoke masks! Designer ones, yes; but not tailored ones. Cool.

I myself continue to wear masks. N95s. Have a large supply of them, that should last me over the next three or four months. After that, the way things gradually seem to be winding down, I'm hoping --- knock on wood! --- I won't have to restock again, or wear these damn things again.

At this point, though, while no doubt things are indeed winding down, but it still seems stupid to unnecessarily subject oneself to risk by not masking up. But yeah, I guess we're at the stage now where the YMMV thing might apply, so that should somone elect to go without, I won't necessarily judge.


Quote:
... One afternoon's lack of rigour on holiday, and I caught it...

Oh really? That's too bad. Hope it didn't hit you too hard, and you're OK again?

Of course, that's kind of where we're at now I guess. The risk of actually catching it hasn't gone away, really. (I mean after adjusting for vaccines and all, I mean over the last three or four months.) What has gone down is the risk of getting it bad.


eta: How on earth do they fit you for your tailored masks, though? I'm sure you don't actually go to a mask-tailor and have him or her run their measuring tape over your face! What, then?

Last edited by Chanakya; 20th September 2022 at 06:19 AM.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:23 AM   #131
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
My point is that if you're going to put on a mask at all, why downgrade from an FFP2 at all? I can't think of one single advantage to anyone of wearing a cloth mask or a surgical mask.
I believe something is better than nothing, when it comes to risk mitigation.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:29 AM   #132
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
I believe something is better than nothing, when it comes to risk mitigation.

That's true, but it's totally missing the point. Why use something that's giving you less protection when there is literally no downside to the thing that gives you more protection.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:36 AM   #133
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
I believe something is better than nothing, when it comes to risk mitigation.
Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
That's true, but it's totally missing the point. Why use something that's giving you less protection when there is literally no downside to the thing that gives you more protection.

*clears throat* ...An analogy comes to mind, which argues for your side of the argument, Rolfe. But I'll leave it unsaid, merely hinted at.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:38 AM   #134
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
That's true, but it's totally missing the point. Why use something that's giving you less protection when there is literally no downside to the thing that gives you more protection.
It is you who are missing the point here. This is in context of winding down protective measures as the pandemic ends. If I thought it necessary to continue protective measures then I wouldn't make any changes at all.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:39 AM   #135
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
*clears throat* ...An analogy comes to mind, which argues for your side of the argument, Rolfe. But I'll leave it unsaid, merely hinted at.
Do you remove your seat belt when you exit the vehicle, or do you leave it on?
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:39 AM   #136
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
Haha, I didn't know you could get bespoke masks! Designer ones, yes; but not tailored ones. Cool.

I myself continue to wear masks. N95s. Have a large supply of them, that should last me over the next three or four months. After that, the way things gradually seem to be winding down, I'm hoping --- knock on wood! --- I won't have to restock again, or wear these damn things again.

At this point, though, while no doubt things are indeed winding down, but it still seems stupid to unnecessarily subject oneself to risk by not masking up. But yeah, I guess we're at the stage now where the YMMV thing might apply, so that should somone elect to go without, I won't necessarily judge.

Oh really? That's too bad. Hope it didn't hit you too hard, and you're OK again?

Of course, that's kind of where we're at now I guess. The risk of actually catching it hasn't gone away, really. (I mean after adjusting for vaccines and all, I mean over the last three or four months.) What has gone down is the risk of getting it bad.

eta: How on earth do they fit you for your tailored masks, though? I'm sure you don't actually go to a mask-tailor and have him or her run their measuring tape over your face! What, then?

A face-fit test is something that's done once, to check that the mask is actually suitable for the wearer, and to train them how to wear it so that it doesn't leak round the sides. I had to do it at work, probably some time around 2008, because I was working with carcasses that might have been carrying bird flu. I didn't wear the masks at work very often. I never thought they'd be such a big part of my retirement!

When all this hit I was already retired but I had a couple of masks in the house I took home when an H1N1 epidemic was threatened in 2010, but it didn't come to anything. They'd been kicking around for ten years and were out of date, but they hadn't been used. I didn't even know what FFP3 meant then (that was the designation on the mask), I kept reading about this N95 thing, but I finally realised N95 was the US equivalent of FFP2 and FFP3 was better.

I made these masks last for nine months until I was able to buy some more of the same brand online. Now I have two in use at one time and alternate them, unless I'm going out frequently. When I was on holiday I had a fresh one for every day. But it seems that some people who didn't mask in a concert our group went to, caught the virus there and brought it back to the rest of us.

Even if you haven't had a formal face-fit test (which involved a probe to see whether a test vapour is getting inside the mask), having someone who knows how to wear the mask show you what to do can be nearly as good, assuming the mask is OK for your face. But I've found that people don't listen and won't do what they're told, and the thing is obviously leaking. But even then, it's going to be better than a cloth or surgical mask.

I think for people who haven't been trained in the face fitting and don't have a background in serious PPE wearing, the FFP2s are pretty good, easy to use and give decent protection. My friend who was wearing an FFP2 didn't get the virus at the concert either.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:40 AM   #137
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Do you remove your seat belt when you exit the vehicle, or do you leave it on?

If we're doing the same analogy as I'd picked on, I guess I leave it on, until after I'm out of the car?
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:42 AM   #138
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
If we're doing the same analogy as I'd picked on, I guess I leave it on, until after I'm out of the car?
No, I'm asking if after you're out of the car do you still have your seat belt on? What's being suggested here is that the protective measure should remain fully employed even after the point of using it has been removed.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:43 AM   #139
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
It is you who are missing the point here. This is in context of winding down protective measures as the pandemic ends. If I thought it necessary to continue protective measures then I wouldn't make any changes at all.

If it's not necessary to continue protective measures, then don't do anything. Simple.

The last couple of weeks have been nice, because I reckoned I really wasn't going to get it again so soon, so I temporarily joined the no-mask contingent. Back to the masks this week though. Not getting this again!

Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
No, I'm asking if after you're out of the car do you still have your seat belt on? What's being suggested here is that the protective measure should remain fully employed even after the point of using it has been removed.

No, I'm suggesting that if the point of protection has not gone away, why choose to use a less efficient protection? You take the seat belt off when you get out of the car. You don't then drape a belt or sash round your shoulders "just in case".

If the danger has ended, then end the masks. If there is still some danger, keep using the better-quality masks.
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Last edited by Rolfe; 20th September 2022 at 06:45 AM.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:46 AM   #140
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
If it's not necessary to continue protective measures, then don't do anything. Simple.
I disagree. I prefer a gradual winding down of protective measures, particularly in the case of a pandemic which doesn't have a clear on/off state.


Quote:
The last couple of weeks have been nice, because I reckoned I really wasn't going to get it again so soon, so I temporarily joined the no-mask contingent. Back to the masks this week though. Not getting this again!
I prefer my approach. I have been masking with N95s and refraining from unnecessary outings, and have not caught covid once yet.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:50 AM   #141
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
No, I'm suggesting that if the point of protection has not gone away
Has it? The context, I remind you again, is "the pandemic is over".

To return to my initial post:

IFF (if and only if) the pandemic is "over",
AND I have received my newstyle booster (scheduled for Friday),
THEN I will reduce my masking to just the cloth one.

Do you not understand conditionals? If the pandemic is still continuing then I will not downgrade my masking.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:52 AM   #142
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
No, I'm asking if after you're out of the car do you still have your seat belt on?

Assuming we're not talking of different things here, the answer has to be a Yes?


Quote:
What's being suggested here is that the protective measure should remain fully employed even after the point of using it has been removed.

[speaking literally now] I think the point of it hasn't quite been removed yet, right? Lessened, sure, but not actually removed?

That is, if one's of the opinion that there's no point to this any more, then I guess one simply goes without, where one can. But to the extent that one thinks there's still some risk, while I agree with you that a lesser protection is better than zero protection, but it isn't very clear to me why one might go for that lesser protection when one might opt for greater protection without making any difference to anything else.

I take your point about generally weaning off of the thing, in very general terms, sure. But ...I don't know, that would kind of apply, in this case, only if you're implying that the actual risk has gone away and the reason one is still wearing these things is primarily psychological.

(As far as I am concerned, that isn't the case. That is, it is possible that my risk perception is wrong, and maybe I'm simply overdoing it now. And I'm happy with doing that, if indeed that's the case, for a while more. But should I come to see, now or after a few months, that the need for wearing masks has gone away, then I don't think I'll have any difficulty, psychologically, getting rid of them cold turkey. In fact I'll be super happy to.)


eta: Just to be clear, TM, I'm not suggesting, not for a minute, that you're wearing masks for some psychological reason, some phobia. But unless it is that, I'm not sure why the weaning off gradually principle, that would be very reasonable in general and in case of quitting other things, might apply here.

Last edited by Chanakya; 20th September 2022 at 06:54 AM.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:53 AM   #143
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
Oh really? That's too bad. Hope it didn't hit you too hard, and you're OK again?

I forgot this bit. I'm totally fine, thanks. I had what seemed like a mild cold, really a sniffle, for a few days, that's all.

The evening I got back from holiday I felt a bit rubbish but I'd had a long day - early rise, bus to the airport, two flights, sitting around in airports and so on. So I went to bed. In the morning I had a slight headache, a slightly sore throat, a slight cough and a runny nose - just runny, not stuffed up. So I did a test. Hell's teeth, positive. I phoned the friend I'd been on holiday with and she said she was just about to phone me with the same news. We obviously got it at the same time. Probably from some idiot who went to that concert without a mask.

I got up, went downstairs and made breakfast. While the kettle was boiling I casually emptied the dishwasher and put all the crockery away. Hmm. Didn't have to do that. Can't be feeling too bad then.

I never felt fatigued or lost my sense of taste or smell, or my appetite. I was still testing positive on day five but by then all I had was a ticklish cough. I missed my godson's wedding though, which was on day eight. I tested negative on day ten.

The ticklish cough continued for another week but that has completely gone away too. I've had far worse colds, often. It would be too easy to say, well, it's no big deal, I don't mind if I get that again. But there's no way to predict whether a second round will be so mild, and every infection with this increases the damage to your immune system and risk or things like heart disease, stroke and dementia. So I'm back in the masks again.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:56 AM   #144
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
That is, if one's of the opinion that there's no point to this any more, then I guess one simply goes without, where one can. But to the extent that one thinks there's still some risk, while I agree with you that a lesser protection is better than zero protection, but it isn't very clear to me why one might go for that lesser protection when one might opt for greater protection without making any difference to anything else.

Thank you, that is the point I was trying to make.

I can see the argument for going for an FFP2 rather than an FFP3, because they're a lot cheaper, more comfortable and easy to use, while still offering a pretty high degree of protection.

But since cloth and surgical masks aren't significantly cheaper or more comfortable or easier to use, while being markedly less effective, why??? If there is indeed still a degree of risk.
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Old 20th September 2022, 06:59 AM   #145
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
Assuming we're not talking of different things here, the answer has to be a Yes?
I'm talking of cars and seat belts. How can you be outside a car with the seat belt still on? If it's that elastic then it can't be functioning effectively.

Quote:
[speaking literally now] I think the point of it hasn't quite been removed yet, right? Lessened, sure, but not actually removed?
THAT'S THE QUESTION OF THE THREAD. Is it over, or not? If it is, then a different course of action is suggested than if it isn't. I've just been saying what I will do if it IS "over".


Quote:
That is, if one's of the opinion that there's no point to this any more, then I guess one simply goes without, where one can. But to the extent that one thinks there's still some risk, while I agree with you that a lesser protection is better than zero protection, but it isn't very clear to me why one might go for that lesser protection when one might opt for greater protection without making any difference to anything else.
Because it's splitting the difference. Some people, and clearly I am among them, are cautious enough that even if the pandemic IS over, we'd prefer to gradually wind down risk mitigation measures rather than completely abandon them.

This is obviously, clearly, incandescently not the same thing as abandoning risk mitigation measures while the pandemic ISN'T over. Why two of you are talking as if those are the same situation is baffling to me.


Quote:
I take your point about generally weaning off of the thing, in very general terms, sure. But ...I don't know, that would kind of apply, in this case, only if you're implying that the actual risk has gone away and the reason one is still wearing these things is primarily psychological.

(As far as I am concerned, that isn't the case. That is, it is possible that my risk perception is wrong, and maybe I'm simply overdoing it now. And I'm happy with doing that, if indeed that's the case, for a while more. But should I come to see, now or after a few months, that the need for wearing masks has gone away, then I don't think I'll have any difficulty, psychologically, getting rid of them cold turkey. In fact I'll be super happy to.)
Fine. For you. For me, I'd prefer gradually winding down measures, as stated above. You do your thing, I'll do mine. I'm not lecturing you for your choice of approach.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:00 AM   #146
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
Has it? The context, I remind you again, is "the pandemic is over".

To return to my initial post:

IFF (if and only if) the pandemic is "over",
AND I have received my newstyle booster (scheduled for Friday),
THEN I will reduce my masking to just the cloth one.

Do you not understand conditionals? If the pandemic is still continuing then I will not downgrade my masking.

What I don't understand is your LOGIC.

If you feel safe, why wear any mask at all?

If you perceive that there is still some risk, why "downgrade" to a mask that's no more comfortable or convenient but offers substantially less protection?

My booster is scheduled for 11th October. Logically, since this offers better protection than an infection, and I was willing to go without a mask for a couple of weeks after the infection, I should be willing to go without a mask for a couple of weeks (at least) after the booster. Still thinking about that one.

But if I perceive any risk, I won't be compromising on mask efficiency. It doesn't work like that.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:04 AM   #147
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
I'm talking of cars and seat belts. How can you be outside a car with the seat belt still on? If it's that elastic then it can't be functioning effectively.

THAT'S THE QUESTION OF THE THREAD. Is it over, or not? If it is, then a different course of action is suggested than if it isn't. I've just been saying what I will do if it IS "over".

Because it's splitting the difference. Some people, and clearly I am among them, are cautious enough that even if the pandemic IS over, we'd prefer to gradually wind down risk mitigation measures rather than completely abandon them.

This is obviously, clearly, incandescently not the same thing as abandoning risk mitigation measures while the pandemic ISN'T over. Why two of you are talking as if those are the same situation is baffling to me.

Fine. For you. For me, I'd prefer gradually winding down measures, as stated above. You do your thing, I'll do mine. I'm not lecturing you for your choice of approach.

I'm not lecturing you, I'm trying to understand your logic.

Whether the actual pandemic is over or not, officially, isn't the issue. The issue is whether the virus is still circulating. If it is, then precautions make sense.

If it isn't, they don't.

What doesn't make sense is saying, in effect, well last month there was a 1 in 4 chance there was someone with the virus in the space where I am, so I wore a high quality mask, but this month the chance is down to 1 in 10 so I'll wear a mask that doesn't offer much protection.

It sounds as if you're doing what you're doing out of some psychological need. Fine. If we recognise that we can dismiss it as not following logic.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:07 AM   #148
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
What I don't understand is your LOGIC.
Clearly.

Quote:
If you feel safe, why wear any mask at all?
Because safety isn't a binary state. There are degrees of safety, it's not "YES/NO".

Quote:
If you perceive that there is still some risk, why "downgrade" to a mask that's no more comfortable or convenient but offers substantially less protection?
I don't know what kind of cloth masks you have, but mine is pretty good. It's quite comfortable and convenient. I'm deeming it sufficient for risk levels slightly greater than zero, as I'd judge things to be after a pandemic is immediately "over".

Quote:
My booster is scheduled for 11th October. Logically, since this offers better protection than an infection, and I was willing to go without a mask for a couple of weeks after the infection, I should be willing to go without a mask for a couple of weeks (at least) after the booster. Still thinking about that one.
You do what you think is best. You've only failed once so far in avoiding the disease so that's a pretty good track record.

Quote:
But if I perceive any risk, I won't be compromising on mask efficiency. It doesn't work like that.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:13 AM   #149
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The thing is, the virus is either present in the place you are, or it isn't. We're now (perhaps) in a situation where the probability of it being present in the place where you are is less than it was. That's the reduced danger. But if it is there, it's no less likely to infect you through a substandard mask than it was last month.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:15 AM   #150
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
I'm talking of cars and seat belts. How can you be outside a car with the seat belt still on? If it's that elastic then it can't be functioning effectively.



THAT'S THE QUESTION OF THE THREAD. Is it over, or not? If it is, then a different course of action is suggested than if it isn't. I've just been saying what I will do if it IS "over".




Because it's splitting the difference. Some people, and clearly I am among them, are cautious enough that even if the pandemic IS over, we'd prefer to gradually wind down risk mitigation measures rather than completely abandon them.

This is obviously, clearly, incandescently not the same thing as abandoning risk mitigation measures while the pandemic ISN'T over. Why two of you are talking as if those are the same situation is baffling to me.




Fine. For you. For me, I'd prefer gradually winding down measures, as stated above. You do your thing, I'll do mine. I'm not lecturing you for your choice of approach.

Peace, man. Absolutely, whatever you're comfortable doing. Wouldn't dream of lecturing you! I was just trying to understand how using cloth masks might make sense here, since it wasn't, and isn't, clear to me. I don't mean that, not for a minute, as an exhortatation for you to stop doing that!

---

As far as the car thing, well, clearly you were going for that literally. The analogy I was going for was --- well I guess I'd best spell it out now --- if one's doing the deed, and thinks protection is called for, well then one uses protection that's fully effective. If some protection is available that is more effective than zero protection, but still much less effective than using the regular protection, well then I don't see why one would go for the less effective protection. If one decides --- rightly or wrongly --- that one doesn't need protection, then one goes without. But if one decides on does need protection, then I simply don't see the logic of using the less effective protection.

I'd imagined that you were, half-jokingly, referring to the same analogy as mine (of doing the deed), except using a further analogy of cars rather than directly alluding to it. Jokingly, of course, because after all there's no kids here, and there's no reason why we shouldn't directly speak of sex and condoms!

But like I was saying, it's just that I wasn't getting where you were coming from, as far as that, and wanted to see what it is I'm missing. Don't mean to lecture you or anything. By all means, whatever works for you!
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:16 AM   #151
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I forgot my other reason for wearing a mask. Pour encourager les autres.

I've been wearing an FFP2 in shops even when I was in "I've just had it I'm not going to get it again so soon" mode. Because I've heard people say that seeing someone else in a mask seems to give them "permission" to wear one too. They feel embarrassed if they're the only one, so they expose themselves to the risk of disease rather than feel embarrassed.

Doesn't embarrass me in the slightest, so if me wearing one allows someone who feels they should but "doesn't like" to wear one to wear it, then fine.

I have no idea if this has ever worked.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:20 AM   #152
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I was trying to think of a condom reference that was appropriate. Maybe, my wife thinks she's possibly in the early stages of the menopause so I'll downgrade to wearing condoms with holes in them?

In reality, if your wife is definitely no longer fertile, junk the things. If there is still a possibility she might conceive (and you don't want another baby), don't use one with holes in it.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:34 AM   #153
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
The thing is, the virus is either present in the place you are, or it isn't. We're now (perhaps) in a situation where the probability of it being present in the place where you are is less than it was. That's the reduced danger. But if it is there, it's no less likely to infect you through a substandard mask than it was last month.
If the virus isn't present, a cloth mask does no harm. If the virus is present, a cloth mask is superior to no mask at all. In the scenario of the pandemic being over the supposition is that the virus is not present.

I have no problem with having one step up in protection from zero protection. Never be the last to discard a safety measure is something I consider to be wise.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:37 AM   #154
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
Peace, man. Absolutely, whatever you're comfortable doing. Wouldn't dream of lecturing you! I was just trying to understand how using cloth masks might make sense here, since it wasn't, and isn't, clear to me. I don't mean that, not for a minute, as an exhortatation for you to stop doing that!

---

As far as the car thing, well, clearly you were going for that literally. The analogy I was going for was --- well I guess I'd best spell it out now --- if one's doing the deed, and thinks protection is called for, well then one uses protection that's fully effective. If some protection is available that is more effective than zero protection, but still much less effective than using the regular protection, well then I don't see why one would go for the less effective protection. If one decides --- rightly or wrongly --- that one doesn't need protection, then one goes without. But if one decides on does need protection, then I simply don't see the logic of using the less effective protection.

I'd imagined that you were, half-jokingly, referring to the same analogy as mine (of doing the deed), except using a further analogy of cars rather than directly alluding to it. Jokingly, of course, because after all there's no kids here, and there's no reason why we shouldn't directly speak of sex and condoms!

But like I was saying, it's just that I wasn't getting where you were coming from, as far as that, and wanted to see what it is I'm missing. Don't mean to lecture you or anything. By all means, whatever works for you!
If you want to use that analogy, then herpes. Condoms won't protect against herpes, but it's still wise to use them because they protect against other things. People who already have herpes should still use condoms so they don't get other things as well.

The lesson is that risk mitigation comes in degrees, and something is better than nothing. One shouldn't think the only choices are perfect protection or absolute abandonment.

In the case of this particular pandemic a cloth mask doesn't offer the best protection, but it offers more protection than absolutely nothing.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:37 AM   #155
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Still not getting it. What advantage are you gaining in wearing a cloth mask? Why would you choose to wear one rather than one that gives higher protection, when you know the virus might still be there?

If better masks were unobtainable, or prohibitively expensive, or hideously uncomfortable, or you were allergic to their components, yes I could see it. But I can find nothing at all to put in the upside column in the situation as you describe it.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:52 AM   #156
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
Still not getting it. What advantage are you gaining in wearing a cloth mask? Why would you choose to wear one rather than one that gives higher protection, when you know the virus might still be there?

If better masks were unobtainable, or prohibitively expensive, or hideously uncomfortable, or you were allergic to their components, yes I could see it. But I can find nothing at all to put in the upside column in the situation as you describe it.
Risk comes in degrees. Risk mitigation comes in degrees. Something is better than nothing. Using these principles let's go through it very, very slowly:

1. Pre-pandemic: no masking, regular contact with public
2. Pandemic: best available masking (N95), only necessary contact with public
3. Post-pandemic:
a) Option A: no masking, regular contact with public (reverting to 1)
b) Option B: masking (cloth), some contact with public (less risk mitigation than 2, but more than 1)
c) Option C: best available masking (N95), only necessary contact with public (same as 2)

When the pandemic is "over", I think I'll follow the path of Option B. It's not a full reversion to pre-pandemic, but it's not a continuation of pandemic measures either. It's a middle path, a compromise which does not abandon all risk mitigation from overconfidence nor does it continue all the previous measures from doubt. It's the option for cautious people who hope the pandemic truly is over, but aren't 100% certain it is.

You seem to be the Option A sort. Bully for you! I admire your confidence. But I don't share it. I've avoided catching this disease so far, and I fully intend to continue that even if my approach seems reckless to the Option C people and pointless to the Option A people.
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Old 20th September 2022, 07:55 AM   #157
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Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
If you want to use that analogy, then herpes. Condoms won't protect against herpes, but it's still wise to use them because they protect against other things. People who already have herpes should still use condoms so they don't get other things as well.

The lesson is that risk mitigation comes in degrees, and something is better than nothing. One shouldn't think the only choices are perfect protection or absolute abandonment.

In the case of this particular pandemic a cloth mask doesn't offer the best protection, but it offers more protection than absolutely nothing.

Not to beat this to death, TragicMonkey, and again, please don't take this as me lecturing you! But sure, take herpes. Why would one use a cloth condom, that maybe offers more protection than no condom at all, when one might just as well wear a regular condom and get the full protection it offers?


----------


I'll try one last time to point out the part which I'm not getting, by addressing these portions of your post addressed to Rolfe:


Originally Posted by TragicMonkey View Post
If the virus isn't present, a cloth mask does no harm. If the virus is present, a cloth mask is superior to no mask at all...

And an N95 is superior to the cloth mask, right?

If the virus isn't present, an N95 does no harm. And if the virus is present, even if at diluted risk than before but still present, then an N95 is superior to both no mask as well as a cloth mask. So that, unless there's some actual reason to, why would you go for the cloth mask as opposed to the N95? (Generic "you", I have no issues, at all, with you personally doing that if that is what you're comfortable with!)


Quote:
In the scenario of the pandemic being over the supposition is that the virus is not present.

I have no problem with having one step up in protection from zero protection. Never be the last to discard a safety measure is something I consider to be wise.

Sure, but why just go one step up in protection from zero, and use a cloth mask, when you can go the full staircase up, and wear an N95?

That is, if it's a choice of either wearing no masks and wearing a cloth mask, I'm with you, I'd wear a cloth mask every time. But if it's a choice between wearing a cloth mask and wearing an N95 mask, then it isn't clear to me why one might want to choose the cloth mask.

(In the early days of the pandemic it might have made sense, sure, because N95s were difficult to come by. But these days they're easily available and not expensive either. So I'm kind of unable to see why exactly, for what reason, you'd favor the cloth over the N95, is where I was coming from.)



eta: Like I said, don't mean to beat this to death, or to lecture to you, absolutely not! And I most certainly don't mean to suggest that you mustn't use cloth masks! Just, if I've been able to make my meaning clear, perhaps you could clarify that, if you'd like to that is.

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Old 20th September 2022, 08:02 AM   #158
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There was a time, in the summer of 2020, when I was wearing a very flimsy cloth thing - it wasn't even a mask, it was a snood I had round my neck and pulled up over my face when going inside. The reason? There were regulations in place about wearing face coverings in indoor spaces, even though there was actually no virus about at the time. In addition, it was summer, small shops were operating with their main doors open, so that being inside was pretty much equivalent to being out of doors.

So then, no risk, but a legal requirement to wear a mask, I was indeed wearing the minimum.
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Old 20th September 2022, 08:06 AM   #159
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Originally Posted by Chanakya View Post
Not to beat this to death, TragicMonkey, and again, please don't take this as me lecturing you! But sure, take herpes. Why would one use a cloth condom, that maybe offers more protection than no condom at all, when one might just as well wear a regular condom and get the full protection it offers?
You're over-applying the analogy here: it's not about the material of the protection used, it's about risk mitigation having degrees. Zero is less than one, one is less than two. If you don't think two is possible that doesn't mean zero is the only other potential outcome.


Quote:
And an N95 is superior to the cloth mask, right?

If the virus isn't present, an N95 does no harm. And if the virus is present, even if at diluted risk than before but still present, then an N95 is superior to both no mask as well as a cloth mask. So that, unless there's some actual reason to, why would you go for the cloth mask as opposed to the N95? (Generic "you", I have no issues, at all, with you personally doing that if that is what you're comfortable with!)


Sure, but why just go one step up in protection from zero, and use a cloth mask, when you can go the full staircase up, and wear an N95?

That is, if it's a choice of either wearing no masks and wearing a cloth mask, I'm with you, I'd wear a cloth mask every time. But if it's a choice between wearing a cloth mask and wearing an N95 mask, then it isn't clear to me why one might want to choose the cloth mask.
I refer you to my immediately prior post. Option B is the middle path between "best protection" and "no protection at all". Option B is to be pursued post pandemic, when the risk is purportedly zero or near enough zero that most people are taking no precautions at all. Option B is for the cautious, Option A is for the reckless, Option C is for the paranoid. Again, this is post pandemic.


And there are some drawbacks to the N95s. They are uncomfortable. This discomfort can be born during the pandemic because it's a much lesser problem than catching the disease. After the pandemic is over, however, when the necessity of masking at all is in question, then downgrading to a more comfortable alternative is not so unreasonable.
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Old 20th September 2022, 08:10 AM   #160
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Originally Posted by Rolfe View Post
There was a time, in the summer of 2020, when I was wearing a very flimsy cloth thing - it wasn't even a mask, it was a snood I had round my neck and pulled up over my face when going inside. The reason? There were regulations in place about wearing face coverings in indoor spaces, even though there was actually no virus about at the time. In addition, it was summer, small shops were operating with their main doors open, so that being inside was pretty much equivalent to being out of doors.

So then, no risk, but a legal requirement to wear a mask, I was indeed wearing the minimum.
Then we are using different defintions of "cloth mask". Mine is a fitted mask meant to be used as a mask, with some filtering material between layers of cloth. It holds water when washed, like a cup. Before N95s were available I wore this every time I went into public, including two visits to emergency rooms, and did not get ill.
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