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Mandatory Face Masks and Its Impact on Education Process

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Coronavirus (SARS-CoV2) has turned the world upside down. Since the disease can spread through air and surface, the fear of catching it anytime, anywhere remains persistent among everyone. Governments of all the countries around the world have mandated the use of masks in public spaces, and educational premises are no exception.

Wearing a mask for a stretched period presents multiple difficulties for both students and educators. Undergraduate students who are in the decisive phases of their careers require hour-long research work, and the mandatory "mask-on" rule poses major obstruction in completing their thesis.

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Wearing masks can undoubtedly attenuate the chances of catching the virus, but it sounds all good and sorted until the question of comfort comes into the picture. Students, especially children, face major trouble while studying with their masks on.

For example:

  • Individuals wearing specs encounter the problem of foggy glasses which needs frequent wiping
  • Re-breathing the same air increases the risk of virus load in infected individuals
  • Speech recognition and comprehension of dialogues through expressions are disabled
  • Exhaled air blows directly into the eyes causing irritation
  • Poorly fitted masks leave marks on the face and behind the ears
  • Individuals with breathing problems experience irregular breathing
  • Certain mask materials can make a person sweat excessively which results in discomfort

All in all, wearing a mask throughout the day at school or college is a tough job and affects the concentration and engagement of students. Teachers too face similar problems and aren't able to convey or converse effectively. Due to the blockages caused by masks, the emotional bonding between educators and learners is impaired and results in low efficiency of the education process.

So what could be done? How to give rise to the comfort quotient and make the masks more cordial with the education process? Here are some measures you can take to lessen the uneasiness caused by wearing masks for a longer duration:

№1. Choose the right material

In order to achieve maximum comfort, go for a fabric that filters less, offers maximum ventilation, and doesn't trap precipitation. Cotton is one of the best options of fabrics for your masks.

№2. Check the fit

Do not buy a mask that covers more area than necessary or fails in providing essential coverage. In both these cases, you will experience discomposure and annoyance.

№3. Go for a tie-on covering

Masks with elastics can form marks and irritate the back of your ears. Pick a tie-on mask to dodge such possibilities.

№4. Check the mask's compatibility with glasses

If you wear glasses, check the fit of the mask and get comfortable wearing it at home first. You can also buy customized masks that come with attached tapes and strips to prevent hassles of regular fog formations on your specs.

№5. Wash or change your mask

Swap your mask with a new one when it starts stinking due to moisture trapped over time. As for cloth masks, you'll need to regularly wash them to retain their efficacy.

№6. Try mask-extenders

Ear-savers or mask-extenders allow proper fitting of masks and keep them in place throughout the day. If you have trouble wearing a mask due to fitting issues, these devices are a "must-try" for you.

To Conclude

In today's time, not wearing masks is not an option. As far as the education process is concerned, we cannot say that wearing masks absolutely impairs a person from learning or teaching. Changes take time to get comfortable with, and once appropriate measures are adopted, these modifications become a part of the lifestyle. Wearing masks mandatorily is one such change and with some effective adjustments, we can overcome this challenge.

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