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Experts say now is not the time to take off face masks

Posted at 9:37 PM, Jul 01, 2020
and last updated 2020-07-01 21:38:01-04

INDIANAPOLIS — Experts say now is not the time to pull off those masks because more COVID-19 cases could be headed our way.

Dr. Cole Beeler, of IU Health, doesn't think we are out of the woods just yet. He thinks more COVID-19 cases are on the way

"We will see more numbers, we will see more cases," Beeler said. "I think the whole point of going slow was to understand how the epidemiology of what's the rate of new cases we will see as we reopen."

But why now? After seeing hot spots like Texas, Arizona and Florida go first when it comes to shutting their states down again, Beeler said it would be wise to realize we are at risk for an uptick in cases, too.

"We are probably just behind other states," Beeler said. "We might have to shut certain situations down again, in particular, that may be like bar settings as we see local hot spots starting to flair up."

Kareen Stephens and her husband, Chris, are currently in quarantine after being diagnosed with the coronavirus.

"I had nausea, stomach pain, a headache for a full week," Stephens said. "No matter what I took it would not go away."

Today she feels okay but she said that can change at any moment. She experienced a range of symptoms — dizziness, a burning sensation in her chest and just feeling tired in general.

"We were eating and we were like, 'This doesn't have a taste,'" Stephens said.

Her sense of smell is gone, too, and this is why Beeler said wearing a mask is absolutely the right thing to do.

"I'm seeing a lot of doubt around the effectiveness of masks," Beeler said. "It's a sign of courtesy that I might be producing aerosols by talking or breathing so wearing a mask shows I'm trying to decrease that as much as possible."

Indiana is seeing more cases of younger people contracting the virus and that is contributing to why the state is seeing the mortality rate also decrease.