Todays post is a guest post from our good friend and owner of Imperium Personal Training Luke Smith.
When i finally grew the nuts to start this and do that first post, I had all the intentions to try and write again in a few weeks or when the brain fog descended again, but honestly - writing that all down helped me immeasurably, I feel a billion times better, as if I’m 2 stone lighter (queue the alcoholic dad bod jokes) I’m training better, I’m sleeping better, I am genuinely happier at this current time - minorly stressed as always but when you have a business and two children that kind of becomes default setting and I can totally deal with that! I had lots of private messages saying that it has also helped others in knowing that they aren’t the only one feeling that way so overall I would call it a success!
Now moving into this guest post today from Luke - I think it’s good to hear another side of an argument, with everything thats going on in the world i think its so easy to become polarised in your own views that you can forget that there is an opposing view to anything and everything in the world. Every single person has their own set of circumstances and variables. Thats the beauty of living in a democracy - there are two sides to every coin. And If there is one thing I do love in this world, its a good old debate, a left and a right - I may come across brazen in some of my views but I will always listen to the opposition and see if I can balance my opinion or take value from it and I think we can all learn lessons from that.
Having read Luke’s piece I do expect some people to be in agreement, but also to hear some counter views to the points brought up, so please feel free to comment below - just please keep them as respectful as possible where you can!
Also, as readers to this I would like to extend the opportunity to anyone that wishes to use this platform to get anything off of their chests, to start a debate or to just get a viewpoint across then please do drop me a message and I will look at everything within its own merit
A common trait we have as humans is the ability to disagree with absolutely everyone and have opinions on topics, whether we are educated on the topic or not.
Before coronavirus we had Brexit which literally divided the country in 2. Moving on, we now are sat in the middle of a pandemic which slowly is starting to divide people again due to contrasting opinions on how to go about preventing the spread of a virus - the only difference this time, we are all trying to reach the same goal.
Over the past couple weeks I’ve heard argument after argument over masks and face coverings, a couple I’ve been involved in myself. Last night I was called irresponsible and uneducated due to a story I shared mentioning masks. So, here’s my 10p on masks/face coverings.
Firstly I’m not a doctor, neither do I pretend to be, but I love to read and I’d like to think I’ve read enough information now to make an adult decision that is best for my own personal health. I would also like to add that I am not advocating people should avoid masks at all costs, that is definitely not the case.
Experimental studies in both humans and manikins indicate that a range of masks provide at least some protective value against various infectious agents (Davies et al.,2013; Leung et al.,2020). Medical & N95 respirator masks are potentially highly effective as both a source of protective and primary protection (Patel et al.,2016). However, it is largely unknown to what degree home made face coverings are at preventing viral transmission.
Now, my argument isn’t with masks and the significance of reducing transmission rate.. my initial argument was the health implications that may ‘possibly’ be caused due to the constant use of masks and the rebreathing of CO2 and other harmful gasses our bodies are trying to dispose of. I am fully aware there’s a lot of data for N95 and surgical masks that suggest mask use for up to 12 hours in a hospital setting will not negatively impact physiological function (Rebmann et al., 2013), however, the majority of these studies are done with healthy adults, no mention of monitoring heart rate or phonic respiration (breathing during speech), all performed with medical grade masks and definitely not performed using a home made face covering thats being used 9-12 hours a day, 5-7 days a week, 25-31 days a month. It is impossible to know how harmful the long term use of masks are, no matter what we are told. It is definitely an area that needs more research before we can determine a true answer.
Exposure to increased levels of C02 can cause dizziness, nausea, breathing problems, headaches, sleep disruption (all of which were reported in the Rebmann study by the subjects, regardless of their findings). Have you experienced any of these symptoms at work?
Now this is just one area of concern, the other is the use of the masks. Masks should be changed or washed every time we take it off.. how many people are doing this? NHS hospital workers are working under sterile conditions and changing their masks regularly each day. But unfortunately, the majority of the population, are not. I believe the Telegraph reported a figure of 1 in 8 people.
When we go into a cafe, take our mask off, put it on the table or into our bag - the mask is now contracting bacteria. The table you’ve put your mask on, will now be contaminated from your mask. When you put it back on and touch it again without washing your hands... you pass even more bacteria to it. Essentially, you’re walking out with a dirty cloth over your face whilst leaving all the masks bacteria on the table. Masks contracting pathogenic organisms can lead to many adverse health effects. Is this why gyms currently only have a contributing transmission rate of 1.7% to the UK’s total figure? There are no masks in our gyms and we get millions of visits each day. Don’t get me wrong we have put in a lot of work to implement the correct control measures, but still, it makes you think are the masks helping to spread the virus?
Recently the CDC (Centers for Disease Control) released a report that shows masks are not effective in preventing covid-19. The study went on to show that despite up to 70% of patient compliance to follow CDC recommendations by wearing masks in advised locations, they still contracted the virus. Is this down to using home made face coverings? Or is this down to mis-using the masks and getting lazy with our hygiene? Because, transmission rates are supposedly lower when they’re on?
Now I’ve rambled on a lot here, and to be honest I could of gone on more, it’s a subject that we talk about a lot in our work environment and a subject we should of probably addressed sooner as we see it happen daily.
As I mentioned before, I’m not saying we should boycott our masks, but instead just be more aware of some of the risks that lead from wearing one if you’re lazy with your sanitation and hygiene, not only for our own health, but for risking the spread of the virus. Ask yourself, do I need to be wearing a mask whilst driving my car with nobody in it? Do I need to be wearing that mask all day, every day if I’m not in work? I also think people need to be more thoughtful of other people’s underlying health issues as the data does support that wearing a mask can pose risk to their health (Harber et al., 2019).
I would like to finish on - If you’re not wearing a mask due to health reasons, cover your mouth to cough or sneeze, respect other people’s boundaries and don’t take the piss!
Thank you all for reading.