Whether non-health care workers, and those who are not first responders, need a face mask is being questioned by some. There are two concerns:
First, if the public buys all the masks, hospitals will not get them;
Second, masks worn without a concept of how the virus behaves may give people a false sense of security.
My own opinion is simple: If I think I may contact a virus, one that is known to kill, and I know that virus is transmitted by my breathing it in, I want a mask. I want the best mask I can get. I want something between me and that virus when someone on a bus or airplane sneezes. The fact that a mask may not give me one hundred percent protection will not stop me from doing the best I can in the situation. Partial efficacy is better than no barrier at all. N95 masks are the best ones and you can find N95 masks for sale both in your local stores and online.
How Do Humans Catch The Virus?
In this question lies the key to prevention. Right now, the modes of transmission are not totally clear but we do know certain things:
Sneezes and coughs will propel droplets from the mouth and nose into a wide area. Mucous from noses and mouths (possibly eyes) will spread via hands and sneezes to other people’s noses and eyes, food served, door knobs, surfaces, etc. Human feces may be a problem as well and possibly even human blood. But the major consideration for most people is going to be airborne and surface spread. Protect mucous membranes, wash hands, watch what you touch and keep your hands out of your mouth.