Wearing a mask can expose children to dangerous levels of carbon dioxide in just THREE MINUTES, study finds
- European study found that children wearing masks for only minutes could be exposed to dangerous carbon dioxide levels
- Children were exposed to carbon dioxide levels between three to twelve times healthy levels
- Younger children were exposed to more dangerous levels of carbon dioxide than older ones
Young children may have been hurt by wearing masks over the past year as they may have been exposed to unsafe carbon dioxide levels in minutes, a study finds.
A study led by researchers Poland, Germany and Austria wanted to test whether making young children wear masks at schools and other public areas could have done more harm than good.
They found that some children were reaching twelve-times the acceptable limit within only three minutes of wearing the mask.
The data is released as schools across the US prepare for the 2021-22 school year, where many younger children will arrive unvaccinated, and may have to wear masks.
Every single child in the study recorded at least three times the appropriate healthy levels of carbon dioxide. Younger children recorded higher levels on average
Researchers, who published their study in JAMA, included 45 children in the study.
Each child was tested for two three-minute time periods.
For each kid, one three minute period was used to count carbon dioxide inhaled, the other was used to detect how much was exhaled.
An average carbon dioxide volume is a child’s breath is 0.04 percent, and the maximum healthy level is 0.2 percent.
Researchers found that carbon dioxide levels among children of all age groups was far exceeding healthy levels.
There was also a trend of younger children having much higher carbon dioxide levels than older children.
The youngest children in the study – aged six – were recording around 1.7 percent carbon levels.
The oldest ages included in the study, aged 15 to 18, were recording around 1.4 percent.
Children with the lowest carbon levels recorded three times above the maximum healthy level.
The highest level recorded was more than 12 times the healthy level.
Researchers noted that some complaints the children made during the study were often side effects of an increased carbon dioxide level.
Children were largely required to wear face masks in schools that reopened last year, though there is little evidence young kids spread COVID-19 at schools
They did note that the study was limited, though.
With only 45 children in the study, it can not be used to represent all populations, but with every child recording at least three times healthy levels of carbon dioxide, researchers believe they did find a worthy trend.
They also noted that since the research was done in a laboratory setting, some of the children may have been apprehensive and not breathing in a normal way.
This could potentially explain why younger children in particular were recording higher carbon levels.
Many children were required to wear masks as schools when they reopened last year.
This was despite data that showed younger children were unlikely to spread COVID-19 at school.
While the rules regarding masks were in good faith, and put in place out of an abundance of caution, they could have potentially caused some hard to children with little benefit.