Letter to the Editor:

To wear a mask or not wear a mask? That is the question and one well worth asking. 

While millions of people across the globe have made the mask a part of their new daily attire, others have not. What’s the deal?

So far, mask wearing seems to be a combination of people acting out their “social responsibility,” a combination of people striving to protect themselves from the infamous COVID-19, and a combination of people feeling forced to wear one while at work otherwise they face high penalties, such as fines, loss of license and/or loss of job.

Here is a look at what mask wearing is actually doing to the health of our society. First and foremost, it’s greatly affecting the psychological health of many — young children and adults alike. (Has mainstream media shared news about the recent rise in suicide rates? Probably not.) 

As such, continual mask wearing causes hypercapnia, which occurs when one breathes in too much carbon dioxide and restricts oxygen flow. This increases cortisol levels, which suppresses the immune system, while causing one to enter into a sympathomimetic drive (fight or flight), which also causes a suppression of the lymphocyte subpopulation, which in-turn leaves one susceptible to every type of pathogen, not just COVID-19. 

Numerous studies have been done on those who wear face masks due to their profession, such as surgeons and nurses (despite COVID-19), and often experience the harmful effects of oxygen restriction. 

Is wearing a mask worth the detriment of our overall well-being? Each individual has the right to decide what is best for themselves. The most powerful right that we have as a people is the ability to think freely. If we don’t practice that right, we will lose it. 

The best thing we can do for our mind, body and spirit, is to firstly, turn off the television. Then to make conscious, well-informed decisions based on faith, not fear. Look deeper than surface level. Think. Feel. Act. 

God bless,

Allison Dickman