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Collier County Health Department wants to dispel some mask rumors

Miriam Frawley and her grandniece have been helping out at Cape Coral Animal Shelter for just over a month.

“We also do the front desk, because we like the busy environment and also talking to people,” said Frawley, a volunteer.

They’re new to volunteering at the shelter. But wearing a mask while there is also a new experience for them.

“I’ve never worn it until masks should be worn and then I started wearing them – I started making them and wearing them, I made this one,” Frawley said while laughing.

Executive Director of the Animal Shelter, Liz McCauley, here in Cape Coral said while they may not be comfortable, masks are worn to protect visitors and staff. “It’s not fun. I don’t enjoy it – especially here in Florida where it’s nice and warm. But I think it’s important to do, and it’s a minor inconvenience to protect ourselves, our friends and family, and our employees,” McCauley said.

Mirriam Frawley believes, “What we’re supposed to be doing it for far outweighs any kind of discomfort that anybody can have in my opinion.”

But Kristine Hollingsworth with the Department of Health says some people do genuinely worry about wearing a mask because of some common misconceptions.

One of them being, “you can either get sick from wearing your mask, you can get mold, mildew, or even legionella in your lungs from wearing a mask,” Hollingsworth said. “This is not proven to be true.”

Amanda Lucey, Executive Director of Marketing for NCH Healthcare system, “There has been no harmful or adverse effects shown from the wearing of masks by the average person.”

But they say you should make sure that your mask fits properly.

“You should never wear a mask that’s tight around your face where you can’t breathe at all,” Hollingsworth added.

“If you wear a mask, a paper mask, a procedural mask – you should dispose of it properly once you are done wearing that mask. And also, if you’re wearing a cloth mask – you need to wash that mask after you wear it,” said Hollingsworth.

Frawley makes sure to follow that suggestion. “I wash my mask every day after I use it. I don’t have any problems breathing. I don’t understand the resistance,” she said.

The CDC advises that if you start to feel overheated while wearing your mask, make sure you’re at least six feet away from others and you can take it off.

Reporter:Veronica Marshall
Writer:Drew Hill
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