Mask kissing: Is it safe to mask kiss in a partially vaccinated world?

New Delhi: Mask to mask kiss – a new trend popularised by celebrities. Recently Kamala Harris, Vice President of the US and second gentleman Doug Emhoff kissed before heading their separate ways on flights with their masks on. Actor Varun Sood kissing his girlfriend Divya Agarwal at the Mumbai airport with a mask on before leaving for Cape Town, South Africa raised many eyebrows.

The question that rises: Is it safe? Let’s see what experts have to say about it in a world that is partially vaccinated. Delhi-based Dr Anubha Singh, Gynaecologist and Medical Director from Shantah Fertility Centre says: “Remember, a mask protects the other person in how it limits the spread of your respiratory droplets. For masks to truly reduce the risks of getting COVID-19, both people would have to wear a mask: A mutual masking. But it might not be a strategy that works for everyone.”

Dr. Singh further added, “You see masks are like condoms until you know how to wear them correctly and yes, they are not 100 per cent safe. Hence be very very careful while kissing”. The consequences of dropping the mask and kissing publicly can go beyond one person getting COVID-19.

Dr. Shobha Gupta, Medical Director and IVF Specialist from Mother’s Lap IVF Centre explained, “It’s very dangerous as the outer surface of the mask has the maximum virus of other people. Close contact with a mask on could be risky. Hence, I would advise avoiding face-to-face contact or closeness.”

What kind of problem arises if two masked people kiss each other? She answers, “It is still a questionable thing, your protective layer over your nose might not be good enough, because the virus is readily transmitted by aerosols. One should be very careful and avoid kissing even with a mask on in public”.

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