Mexican inventors have produced the "eating mask," a comical-in-appearance face mask that only covers the nose while the user is eating and drinking.
Researchers designed it to be worn like a normal face mask, with the straps of the mask wrapping behind the ears. It can be worn under a normal mask so that when one removes the regular medical mask to eat, their noses are still protected.
Coronavirus "is very contagious," said immunologist Gustavo Acosta, who worked on the new tech. Infection, he explained, "can occur through any of these three passages (eyes, nose, mouth). Obviously, we cannot be infected by tears but we can be infected if an infected person sneezes or coughs. If there is no physical barrier we can get infected through respiratory dropped expelled from (COVID) patients or infected individuals. And with these infected individuals who have not been identified as having the infection."
He further explained that "even with two face masks, they both have to be removed, if you have the face shield it is removed (while eating and drinking). It (nose-only mask) is for daily activities, that's when they are used."
According to Johns Hopkins University in the US, cells that give people a sense of smell are a key entry point for coronavirus, making nose coverings like these important.
However, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends people wear a face mask that covers the nose, mouth, and chin.