Mythbusters: face masks & CO2

There are a lot of advantages to living in a world where information is easily accessible through websites and social media, but there can also be drawbacks when individuals can post misinformation without scientific proof.

Such is the case in the recent articles circulating online claiming that wearing a face mask can cause carbon dioxide (CO2) intoxication or oxygen deficiency - but that is not the case. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other legitimate health care organizations, prolonged use of any face mask has not been shown to cause CO2 toxicity or lack of oxygen in healthy people.

There are certain conditions such as chronic lung disease in which wearing a mask may make breathing more difficult, but not because of CO2 retention.

Check with reliable sources