This article demonstrates that oxygen levels do NOT drop when older adults wear non-medical face masks with 3-layers.
There have been many claims on social media that facemasks are generally unhealthy and even unsafe, because they reportedly increase CO2 (carbon dioxide) levels and lower oxygen levels. I even saw a video posted last spring by a hospital nurse explaining to people why it is unsafe to wear a mask for hours at a time. She spoke with confidence and certainty, as if she performed a large study on the subject.
Respiratory physiology can demonstrate that low oxygenation leads to elevated carbon dioxide fairly rapidly. Elevated carbon dioxide levels would cause drowsiness and shortness of breath (air hunger). If your facemask is causing your oxygen level to drop then you’re not going to feel well and would not be able to tolerate wearing it for long. But don’t take my word for it, just go online and buy a pulse oximeter (pulse ox) to measure your oxygen level (oxygen saturation). These devices attach to your finger and take a few seconds to give results. They can be found for as cheap as $15-$30 online. Test your own oxygen level with and without a mask, at rest and while walking around and talking, and let the PAA community know if your results are different from this study, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA).
If you purchase a device but are having trouble using it feel free to send me an email and I will explain how to use it. It is simple but everyone has a unique anatomy that can make it challenging for some devices to work properly.
Dr. Justin Groode | Patient Advocate Alliance LLC