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Germany’s leading Hygienists assume, that simple, even self-stitched protective masks can reduce the risk of infection with the Coronavirus.

“Who is coughing, and a mouth-nose protection (MNS) contributes to, protects the largest part of the droplets, which remain in the cloth or fabric hanging,” said the spokesman of the Board of the German society for hospital hygiene (DGKH), Peter Walger, the ‘New osnabrück newspaper’ (Thursday).

Private households should sew perfectly masks made of cloth.

The Robert Koch Institute (RKI) changed on Thursday night, his assessment for the Wearing of protective masks and recommends the following models.

A mouth protects protection against the Coronavirus?

The current assessment of the RKIs, If people – even without symptoms – wear as a precautionary measure, a mask, could the risk of Transmission of virus to other reduce, it said on the website of the Federal authority.

Scientifically this is not proven but. Previously, the RKI had recommended the Mouth guard, only people with acute respiratory diseases. Not everyone who is infected with Sars-CoV-2, I notice that too, it said.

Some of the Infected patients, not at all, could give the pathogen but nevertheless, more.

Rules for coughing and Sneezing, hand hygiene, and the minimum distance should also be used with masks continue to be met.

In addition, there is no sufficient evidence that a mouth-nose cover or a sewn mask protects itself against infection.

The RKI refers in its new evaluation on the so-called mouth-nose protection, and makeshift masks made of cloth.

An Overview of the various protective masks

1. Self-Made Masks

There are plenty of average circulating called the pattern and folding instructions for a self – made Mouth guard or even Community Mask.

This is especially against the Background of the shortage of medical masks is not a wise idea, said of the virologist Christian Drosten of the NDR. The protective properties, but depend strongly on the Material and usage. Are woven better suited as a lightweight woven fabrics.

A scientifically-proven protective effect of the masks, however, have not. However, it is suspected that you reduce the risk of infection, because they reduce the droplet ejection and the awareness of the need for careful handling and other support.

Hygiene rules and distance rules should be adhered to anyway.

2. Mouth-Nose Protection

Corona: The Mouth-Nose Protection Mask

These masks are mainly used for the protection of others. In medical facilities, they are currently often in short supply. The so-called mouth-nose protection intercepts also liquid splashes and droplets in the exhaled air of the Person wearing. So the risk of another Person through coughing, Sneezing or Talking, infect, can be reduced.

The carrier can also protect the larger droplets from the surroundings. Adequate protection against viruses and bacteria also do not offer, because the masks are finally on the face. Such as small droplets in the air breathed in. Even with these masks, the rules for hand hygiene and the safety distance are more.

3. FFP-masks

Corona: FFP-masks

The abbreviation for FFP is for Filtering Face Piece – so about filtering face protection. They are distinguished in three classes: 1, 2, and 3. Protect in varying degrees against solid and liquid particles, with 3 being the highest protection class.

To protect against Corona virus, experts recommend masks of the class 2 and 3. Because of the Filter of the FFP-3 mask is very dense, the Breathing so difficult.

The mask can be worn only for short periods of time. The medical masks, including surgical masks are currently often in short supply. Many experts argue about this, these protection masks primary hospitals, doctor’s offices and nursing homes to reserve.

Alternatives to Mouth guards

“Also sewn sanitary napkins can be useful, you will increase the protection and to catch additional moisture,” said Walger. Damp masks were rapidly drying. “At 70 degrees in a microwave or oven, all of the viruses die off.”

Walger said, who would about coughs from a Meter of an Infected that was covered by a cloth or even a scarf to a large extent before the droplets to breathe in, because they remained in the scarf to hang.

Only a small part of it would find through the pores, and only in very close proximity to the Coughing.

No Mouth guard in the fresh air necessary

On the road the Wearing of MNS is not necessary, said the DGKH speaker more. In the fresh air or in well ventilated rooms, the droplet cloud into the distributed immediately in a dilution that will reduce the risk significantly.

In non-ventilated areas, the risk of Infection is higher, but also decreases there by a simple MNS “significantly”. “Therefore, Each mask protects! And the more it is aired, the more effective you can protect.”

It was “absolutely sufficient” to wear contacts under Not-at-risk groups and in the normal social life of a simple mouth-nose protection. “That’s why every company and every Institution that can manufacture fuel masks should.”


  • The Robert Koch Institute (2020): questions and answers, retrieved on 03.04.2020:
  • Federal Agency for medicinal product and medical devices (2020):notes from the BfArM to use self-made masks (so-called “Community-masks”), medical mouth-nose protection (MNS), as well as filtering half mask (FFP2 and FFP3) in connection with the Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2 / Covid-19), retrieved on 03.04.2020:
  • Federal government (2020): recommendation mouth-nose protection, archived from the original on 03.04.2020:
  • Anvil (2020): Covid-19, retrieved on 03.04.2020:

Deutsche Presse-Agentur (dpa)

*The contribution of “protective masks against Coronavirus: Mouth guard Yes or no? New assessment of the RKI” is published by FitForFun. Contact with the executives here.