Masking, Health and PTSD

What I know to be true vs. what I see and hear. 

May clarity and well being come to you.

For a while now I have been so freaked out by the masks. I couldn't figure out why they seem harmless and give many a sense of security, and yet they give me a feeling of uneasiness. And now it's even worse. We are all being forced to wear a mask anytime we go to a store or a public place.

Odd. It seems the mandates are more fear based than a proper response to the facts on COVID-19.

I could not figure it out what I was sensing. It was something more than being frustrated by so many people being hypnotized into thinking that it was stopping the spread of a virus. I have looked in to the facts as a health professional, but I could not find any significant proof that masks were helpful. Masks, at best, seem to give a false sense of security, but stopping the spread of COVID-19? Not so much.  Honestly, research the health facts for your self.  I will give you a list of some great references below.

I believe a mask does not keep you from spreading a virus, but can actually cause you great harm. We need to focus differently on solutions and not on being vulnerable to a virus. Yes, I personally believe that we can develop a natural immunity to the COVID-19 virus, just like we can the flu virus, SARS, MERS, and all the rest.  

I've personally witnessed my clients who work out with a mask. They have a great deal of trouble breathing. I am concerned about them hyperventilating and passing out. They are taking in so much of their own carbon dioxide, and it is hard to push a set to failure.

Here are some of my findings: 

 Experts were debating the effectiveness of wearing masks to reduce the risk of infection long before COVID-19 came into the picture. Surgical masks were introduced nearly a century ago for the purpose of protecting patients during surgery. Yet, researchers continue to question whether this established routine is necessary.
 The researchers found that those who wore cloth masks had a significantly higher rate of flu-like illness and all measured infections as compared to participants using medical masks. They cited moisture retention, reuse and poor filtration as potential reasons for the increased rates of infection.
 The researchers found that those who wore cloth masks had a significantly higher rate of flu-like illness and all measured infections as compared to participants using medical masks. They cited moisture retention, reuse and poor filtration as potential reasons for the increased rates of infection. 
They wrote, “… cloth masks should not be recommended for HCWs [health care workers], particularly in high-risk situations, and guidelines need to be updated.”

  • "Not a single randomized controlled trial with verified outcome has been able to detect a statistically significant advantage of wearing a mask versus not wearing a mask, when it comes to preventing infectious viral illness.
  • If there were any significant advantage to wearing a mask to reduce infection risk to either the wearer or others in the vicinity, then it would have been detected in at least one of these trials, yet there's no sign of such a benefit.
  • There is no evidence that masks are of any utility for preventing infection by either stopping the aerosol particles from coming out, or from going in. You're not helping the people around you by wearing a mask, and you're not helping yourself avoid the disease by wearing a mask.
  • Infectious viral respiratory diseases primarily spread via very fine aerosol particles that are in suspension in the air. Any mask that allows you to breathe therefore allows for transmission of aerosolized viruses.
  • Data show masks may not lower the risk of contracting the common cold and cloth masks increase the risk for health care workers of getting flu-like illnesses
  • The effectiveness of cloth masks reduced by 20% after being washed and dried four times. Wearing masks increases the potential for headaches and lowers a surgeon’s oxygen level.
or this from Dr Mark Sircus: Wearing Masks-A Sledgehammer To Your Health

Serious side effects can occur if the oxygen levels drop outside the safe zone. When oxygen concentrations drop from 19.5 to 16 percent, and you engage in physical activity, your cells fail to receive the oxygen needed to function correctly. So wearing masks is not indicated for any reason because masks represent slow suffocation.  Not quite as bad as strangling a person or killing them outright by completely cutting off their breath, but across the board, health will be depressed, and death from all causes will increase.

 "Reduced blood-oxygen levels leading to reduced mental clarity, lethargy, and reduced immunities. This condition, known as “hypoxia,” can cause persons to lose focus and make bad decisions which can be dangerous to others. People are already falling asleep and fainting when doing routine tasks while wearing masks. The result could range from physical injury to self or others due to inattentiveness all the way to a social tragedy such as a rushed inaccurate verdict rendered by an oxygen-deprived masked jury that was unable to fully focus on and comprehend evidence and arguments in a case.  The likelihood of viral infections increases with hypoxia because the body’s natural defenses are degraded.

Moisture retention in lungs due to the mask’s retention of water vapor in the lungs. Moisture retention in lungs is a leading factor associated with pneumonia, bronchitis, viral and bacterial infections, asthma, and other respiratory ailments. Fluid build-up in the lungs can be very hard to treat and can result in death in serious cases of pneumonia and other ailments. If the lungs cannot take in dry air and expel humid air, then serious congestion may develop in the lungs. "

Surgeon General. U.S. officials, including the Surgeon General of the United States, Jerome Adams, initially urged people to not buy and wear masks in an effort to protect themselves from COVID-19. In an interview, Adams said that wearing face masks could actually increase a person’s risk of contracting the coronavirus. “You can increase your risk of getting it by wearing a mask if you are not a health care provider,” Adams said. “Folks who don’t know how to wear them properly tend to touch their faces a lot and actually can increase the spread of coronavirus,” he added.  Although he later relented to public pressure, Surgeon General Jerome initially tweeted, “Seriously people – STOP BUYING MASKS! They are NOT effective in preventing general public from catching #Coronavirus.”
Here are some insights from Dr.Brownstein: We Must Wear Face Masks? Show Me The Science Behind That!
Folks, I have been writing to you about COVID for over a month. It is been a painful time period for all of us. What is really sad is that too many political dictates are being fostered on us without any good scientific evidence to back them up. One of those requirements that has me irritated is the use of face coverings that I see so prevalent out there. When I go to Costco, 95% of the people in the store are wearing face masks. Why is that?

Finally, this from Stand for Health and Freedom: FAQ

If I can wear a mask, why can’t you wear a mask?

Many people assume that because they are able to wear a mask without issue, everyone should be able to wear a mask without issue. This is not so. There are numerous reasons why someone might not be able to wear a mask. These include:

  • Anxiety or other psychological issues and disorders
  • Autism or other developmental disorders
  • Hearing impairments
  • Fear of racial profiling, violence or brutality by being a person of color or minority in a mask
  • PTSD from being a victim of a rape, sexual assault or another violent crime in which the perpetrator was wearing a face covering or forced the victim to wear a face covering
  • Respiratory conditions such as asthma and COPD
  • Sensory issues and disorders
  • Skin conditions (staph infections, yeast infections, contact dermatitis, etc.)

Moreover, just because someone with one of the above conditions wears a mask does not mean that everyone with that condition can do so. Every human has a different physiological and psychological makeup; what’s true for one person is not true for all.

Anyway, I came to the conclusion that wearing a mask should be a personal choice. Whatever solutions you find that helps you feel healthy, safe, hopeful and good wherever you are, you should feel free to do.

I don't get freaked out by much, but I just couldn't shake the feeling. I usually focus on the solution and knew I would find it. Then I had an aha! moment. My negative feeling about wearing a face mask  actually has to do with something quite terrifying to me as a mom, as a grandma, and as a woman with ptsd from a past sexual scary event.

I  have an issue with the mouth and nose being covered. An elderly person, for example, who is covering her mouth and nose for "protection" will have trouble breathing. Every breath is an effort. I saw this in my father when we went for walks, even without a mask! 

I feel for those that have been wearing a mask for many hours at a time for work. People like a first responder, and one of the most obvious ones to me are all the people who work at our local grocery store. It must be miserable for them.  Do they really need to wear it when they are off the clock, such as at an outdoor public garden, grocery store, or zoo? There are those who are claustrophobic, or some that cannot take the heat of the day with a mask on. And what about those who really do have health issues like a being highly prone to a panic attack with something over their face. Can we really judge these people for pulling it down off their face?

My own ptsd, is this: the inability to communicate or scream. It is my biggest fear with a cloth mask or bandanna. Think of your mouth being covered so you cannot scream or ask for help. Sadly, this is real for many victims of sexual assault, as it was true for me. I struggled with speaking up, for myself for a very long time afterwards. A mask doesn't make me feel safe, hopeful, or that I am protecting another.  It symbolizes a stifling of your voice,keeping the sickness in. It lead me to the thought of my grandchildren wearing one and I can't bear it. They cannot talk clearly. How are they going to  focus in school play, communicate, laugh out loud, ask for help...or scream if need be?

Let's make masks optional...not mandatory.