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  #1  
Old October 13th, 2009, 08:39 AM
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Default Surgical mask at the airport

So my wife and I are finalizing our vacation plans for the end of the month and have come upon a conundrum of sorts. To wear surgical masks at the airport/airplane or not. Our 2 month old Gabriel will be wearing one per doctor's recommendation but how about us? The doctor suggests we do but are we being over cautious? Are we going to look like idiots?

I was going to make a yes/no poll out of this but I don't know how.
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  #2  
Old October 13th, 2009, 09:26 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

Listen to your doctor. Who cares what you look like...do you know any of those people? Better safe than sorry.

Or get sick or dead and try to explain THAT to your kid.
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  #3  
Old October 13th, 2009, 10:49 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

No worry. You'll have a mask on, so no one will recognize you.
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  #4  
Old October 13th, 2009, 12:12 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Kungpao View Post
So my wife and I are finalizing our vacation plans for the end of the month and have come upon a conundrum of sorts. To wear surgical masks at the airport/airplane or not. Our 2 month old Gabriel will be wearing one per doctor's recommendation but how about us? The doctor suggests we do but are we being over cautious? Are we going to look like idiots?

I was going to make a yes/no poll out of this but I don't know how.
Who cares what some perfect strangers may think? If you trust your doctor, then by all means, IMO. Although security may ask you to remove them momentarily for identification purposes.
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  #5  
Old October 13th, 2009, 02:16 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

regarding masks for you and your missus:

i'll refer you to a post I did earlier this year. The info re contact with people who have travelled to Mexico/US mainland is now outdated, but the rest of it remains accurate.

it's completely up to you whether you & your wife choose to wear the masks or not. however, even the Centers for Disease Control agrees masks that are readily available to the general public have membranes that are too big to prevent flu and other virus from being inhaled by the mask-wearer. they're meant more for people who are already sick to prevent them from having their germs spew out so readily into the air.

unless you've purchased what i believe is called an N95 mask and been professionally fit tested for it, the masks you're likely to be wearing give a false sense of security for you and maybe give a wrong impression to others.

from the CDC:
Quote:
In community and home settings, the use of facemasks and respirators generally are not recommended. However, for certain circumstances as described in Table 1, a facemask or respirator may be considered, specifically for persons at increased risk of severe illness from influenza.
here's the link. scroll down about midway for info re masks and make sure to look at table 1. feel free to discuss the CDC info with your MD and ask him/her what his/her rationale is for you and your wife to wear masks. if what your doc tells you after that makes sense to you, then yes, wear the masks.

hope this is helpful. and if you two decide to wear masks & feel social discomfort, there is always this solace:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Honoruru View Post
No worry. You'll have a mask on, so no one will recognize you.
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  #6  
Old October 13th, 2009, 08:58 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Kungpao View Post
Are we going to look like idiots?
As someone who sat next to a family wearing such masks on an airplane flight last month, labelling them as "idiots" wasn't on the list to do. However don't be surprised if the other travelers give you a wide berth when they encounter you.
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  #7  
Old October 13th, 2009, 10:57 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

Honestly, I think looking like an idiot at the airport is a norm. It's pretty much the standard with travelling, since most people have two concerns: comfort and carrying as many items on your person as possible. I've gone through the airport in pajama pants, wearing a neck pillow, with my pockets stuffed to the brim. A few winters ago I flew to Hawaii from sub zero temperatures -- I must have looked pretty dumb making my way through Honolulu International in my winter coat, hat and scarf.

I say wear the masks and pretend you're going to Japan. They're all the rage there.
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  #8  
Old October 14th, 2009, 12:19 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

Kungpao, do you or your wife have even a little artistic skill? Decorate the masks and add to each one the silliest, double entendre saying you can come up with. Deliberately call attention to the masks in a humorous way. Who knows, you may get orders for them and end up embarking on a whole, new career!
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  #9  
Old October 14th, 2009, 02:20 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by SusieMisajon View Post
Listen to your doctor. Who cares what you look like...do you know any of those people? Better safe than sorry.

Or get sick or dead and try to explain THAT to your kid.

Agreed ! with the above.
Put a few decorative transfers on the masks as has been suggested. The kids will probably love them and you migt start a rage, and make a few $.
When I went to see my son in Japan, everybody wore masks and paper suits, it was the norm.
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  #10  
Old October 14th, 2009, 02:21 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by cynsaligia View Post
however, even the Centers for Disease Control agrees masks that are readily available to the general public have membranes that are too big to prevent flu and other virus from being inhaled by the mask-wearer.
Yes. That is exactly what my doctor said to me last month. And, also, the "gaps" at the sides of the mask allow unfiltered air inside the mask. No matter how carefully you try to form the mask to fit your face, small gaps remain.
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  #11  
Old October 14th, 2009, 07:19 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

I think there'd be more of an issue of how to keep from touching stuff that everybody has been touching and then remembering to not touch the baby or your face.

Bring many little bottles of hand sanitizer to stuff in various pockets? Disinfectant spray for the seat backs and arm rests?
Figuring out how to get out of the toilet without using your clean hands to open the door?
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  #12  
Old October 14th, 2009, 08:57 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

How do you get all that stuff onto a plane ? Here they confiscate it and bin it.
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  #13  
Old October 14th, 2009, 11:06 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

wow, Ok, I apologize. I didn't realize my post sounded so vein lol. I'm not really that overly concerned about looking like an idiot. I guess I'm just used to being a brown person in a predominantly white society and am a little on the leery side of inviting that sort of attention.

Great stuff for me to ponder! Thanks everyone!

cynsaligia, the reason I posted this is due to primarily reading things similar to what you posted. Thanks for re-affirming.

Vanguard, I hear ya. Although I don't think I fully trust ANY doctor. They can be quite vague and their opinions on non yes or no questions vary widely.

Tutu, I was ready to buy some of the "designer" ones on the internet!! However as confirmed by cyn earlier in this post. "The designer" ones aren't the right type. As for making them myself...our son pretty much has taken up most of our "free" time
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  #14  
Old October 14th, 2009, 02:19 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peshkwe View Post
Bring many little bottles of hand sanitizer to stuff in various pockets?
This would definitely be a problem going through security. Liquids have to fit the 3-1-1 rule. No more than three ounces per bottle and all of your liquids have to fit into a single 1 quart ziploc. I wouldn't bat an eye at someone wearing a mask but I tend to get annoyed at those who hold up the line because they forgot the liquid regulations.

Now, there are special rules for those traveling with infants. You could probably get away with taking baby wipes in your carry-on without them being included in the 3-1-1 rule. Just give your hands a swipe with those after touching anything suspect.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 02:57 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by sophielynette View Post
This would definitely be a problem going through security. Liquids have to fit the 3-1-1 rule. No more than three ounces per bottle and all of your liquids have to fit into a single 1 quart ziploc.
I've learned to buy the travel size hand sanitizers, and pack them into the ziplock while going through security. Once past the security, I take the sanitizers out of the ziplock and spread them amongst my pockets, carry on's outer pouch, etc etc. I'll gladly give up packing the shampoo (which I can buy at my destination or get from the hotel), in order to have a way to help keep germs at bay while in the airport and on the plane (meaning, sanitizers get priority over packing shampoo).

Quote:
Originally Posted by Peshkwe View Post
Figuring out how to get out of the toilet without using your clean hands to open the door?
That one is easy. Just use the used paper towel to open the door, and once the lock has been released drop the paper towel into the trash.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 03:56 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Amati View Post
[...]
That one is easy. Just use the used paper towel to open the door, and once the lock has been released drop the paper towel into the trash.
That's what I do in all public restrooms. I turn off the faucet and open the door with a paper towel.
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  #17  
Old October 14th, 2009, 05:47 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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That's what I do in all public restrooms. I turn off the faucet and open the door with a paper towel.
Yeah, me too. But in my previous post if figured that it would be enough of an "education" to explain about opening the door with a paper towel, and that trying to explain how to do that little double-push-button-airline-faucet with a paper towel would be too much for the uninitiated.
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  #18  
Old October 14th, 2009, 07:48 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

Can I add that in my shoulder bag I keep a tub of baby wipes. Superb for swiping down trolley cart handles,,,,etc.
Never had any probs in the customs with them.
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  #19  
Old October 14th, 2009, 07:52 PM
Peshkwe Peshkwe is offline
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

And if there were no paper towels, just the blower type dryers? Hmmm...?

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  #20  
Old October 14th, 2009, 08:15 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Peshkwe View Post
And if there were no paper towels, just the blower type dryers? Hmmm...?

TP, fresh seat liner, or shirt tail all work.
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  #21  
Old October 14th, 2009, 09:09 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Peshkwe View Post
And if there were no paper towels, just the blower type dryers? Hmmm...?

Health faucet?
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  #22  
Old October 14th, 2009, 09:29 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Vanguard View Post

Ummm...if there's enough pressure in that thing to open up a door without touching it....

What's it gonna do to yer nether regions?
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  #23  
Old October 14th, 2009, 09:31 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Can I add that in my shoulder bag I keep a tub of baby wipes. Superb for swiping down trolley cart handles,,,,etc.
Never had any probs in the customs with them.
Baby wipes don't have disinfectant. You need those Clorox wipes if you want to take care of bacteria or viruses.
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Old October 14th, 2009, 09:33 PM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Peshkwe View Post
Ummm...if there's enough pressure in that thing to open up a door without touching it....

What's it gonna do to yer nether regions?
Some regions the cold water is really really really cold. Not sure if I want to refrigerate that part of my body.
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  #25  
Old October 15th, 2009, 08:18 AM
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Default Re: Surgical mask at the airport

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Originally Posted by Peshkwe View Post
Ummm...if there's enough pressure in that thing to open up a door without touching it....

What's it gonna do to yer nether regions?
The one's I've encountered didn't have that problem. But most bathrooms in the region also have a watering can which can be used if there is indeed too much water pressure (or personal preference, of course).

Last edited by Vanguard; October 15th, 2009 at 08:30 AM.
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