Keats School


Are Face Masks a must in Kunming?

debaser (615 posts) • +1

I used a Respro mask for cycling. That was specifically to filter out ALL fine particulates (down to and including PM2.5). The replacement filters weren't cheap but it was a lot cheaper than a new pair of lungs! After about a month the filters were often a filthy grey/black near the mouth and nose so I'm pretty sure they did their job. Yes, the surgical type masks offer little protection but pollution masks do and are worth wearing if you'll be doing any outdoor exercise (running/jogging/cycling). You won't need it for daily life.

tigertiger (4792 posts) • +1

I am sure that the SCMP article said that badly fitting face masks offered little protection. My face mask fits well. The pm 2.5 masks are not the surgical kind. The former provide protection, the latter less so.

kurtosis (67 posts) • +1

There have been various studies on this topic and all find that masks don't offer the level of protection that they promise. The best masks manage to filter out 90 Percent of PM2.5 particles, but most affordable masks filter "only" 60 Percent.

These levels are insufficient for protecting sensitive persons and also insufficient for normal healthy people during smoggy days in Beijing.

However, it's certainly better than nothing - and given the levels in Kunming, still sufficient even for sensitive people like respiratory disease patients or pregnant women during the worst polluted days.

But in Kunming there is no medical need to wear a mask for PM2.5 protection for healthy individuals over the age of 5 - the pollution won't significantly increase your risk for respiratory diseases.

Nevertheless, larger pollutants like dust or smoke do make some people uncomfortable - and for these rather large particles, masks are very efficient filters.

dolphin (270 posts) • -1

electric car sales are on the rise. maybe this will reduce pollution. and i read that diabetes is linked to pollution. so it's not just the lungs you need to worry about.

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