Surviving in the age of Corona
As the deadly coronavirus pandemic continues to claim more lives and wreak havoc across its path, people across the globe are relying on three defense mechanisms to stay safe.
Sanitizing with hand sanitizers or soap, wearing face masks and keeping social distance are the three main defense mechanisms the public is urged to observe to stay safe.
While these defense mechanisms are necessary they don’t necessarily make life easy. A lot of people are wearing a face mask for the first time and find it can be uncomfortable and frustrating, especially while trying to breathe.
I can’t breathe, I can’t see
People who wear glasses have it even rougher. Apart from the discomfort of wearing the mask, they have to deal with a whole new other problem of trying to see behind those masks.
When they breathe out warm breath shoots upwards into the colder lens, cools down and ends up condensing and fogging them ultimately reducing their vision. So frustrating is this new challenge of trying to see behind a mask that James* a journalist in Nairobi who wears glasses says whenever he puts his mask he simply removes his glasses and only puts them back once he has removed the face mask.
“You think your life is hard, try wearing a facemask with glasses on and welcome to my world. It’s frickin frustrating and sometimes you find that the left eye gets foggy while the right eye is clear. On a bad eye both fog up every time I breathe. I have simply stopped wearing my glasses when I put on my face mask because the two can’t go hand in hand, it’s either I risk walking into a pole or risk getting corona,” says James.
So, to help out James and millions of glass wearing guys out there trying to stay safe in the face of corona here are four ways to avoid your glasses fogging up while wearing a face mask.
Use soap and water
Yes! Good old soap does not only keep you keep Covid-19 at bay every time you wash your hands but it can also make you see clearly.
Wash your glasses in soapy water and then let them air dry or very gently dry them. The idea is that the soap leaves behind a film that prevents glasses from fogging.
It’s recommended you avoid soaps that are made with lotion. Shaving foam can also work and simply apply a thin layer of shaving cream to the inside of your glasses, then gently wipe it off.
This is by far the most effective and most easy to pull of. Apparently surgeons who have to wear glasses for hours on end at the surgical table use this method with success.
Put your glasses over your mask
Try pulling up your mask so the top sits higher on your nose, and wear your glasses on top of the face mask. The only problem with this method is that it doesn’t work with every other face mask. Masks come in different designs and some are tight and nicely cover your nostrils, others, however, are loose and sometimes cover your whole face so even putting your glasses on top doesn’t help much because breath still does escape from the sides and fog your glasses as they escape. Some apply a strip of tape that’s specially designed for use on skin to the top edge of the mask to close the gap.
Put a tissue on the inside of the mask
Just tape a folded tissue under your mask at the bridge of your nose and you are good to go. The Tissue will absorb escaping moisture. The downside of this method is if it’s too close to your mouth it may end up getting wet and even end up inside your mouth.
If you have the money then there are a number of commercially available anti-fogging sprays and wipes out there that may be worth trying.31