Making and caring for a cloth mask

HealthBeat

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The CDC recommends wearing cloth face masks in public places, like grocery stores and pharmacies, where social distancing measures are tough to maintain.

In addition to working her full-time job and helping her daughter with school work, Marti Thompson is adding one more thing to her to-do list. Making cloth masks.

“I’ve made at least 40, so far,” Thompson said.

Thompson says her 11-year-old daughter has been a huge help in the mask making.
Once completed, the mother-daughter duo is donating them to those in need, like non-medical hospital staff.

“Maintenance people, environmental service people, food services, guest services, any of those areas that don’t really have that direct patient contact but they need to be protected as well,” Nona Bixler said.

Even if you don’t work inside a health care facility, the CDC is still recommending you wear a mask during tasks like picking up groceries.

Nona Bixler with Sanford Health says cloth masks should be made out of 100 percent cotton, and washed daily.

“It should cover you from your nose, tightly, all the way around your chin,” Bixler said.

And when it comes time to take it off, she recommends folding it up, putting it inside a bag, and washing your hands before doing anything like eating or drinking.

“What we have heard and learned is that if you have your mask on and you can blow out a candle, that mask is not protecting you,” Bixler said.

If you already have a mask for yourself but you’re looking to make more, Bixler says you can donate masks that meet the requirements to Sanford Health.

And while you’re getting creative, and maybe learning a new skill, you’re also making a difference.

“I feel really strongly that I want to always do what I can to help and to assist and to benefit the cause and so that’s why I’m making these for those that I know need them and just giving them away,” Thompson said.

If you would like to donate a cloth mask to Sanford Health, Bixler says a drop-off site is available at the main entrance of the hospital.

If you have questions, she recommends people call ahead.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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