(SUMMIT NEWS) – A study carried out by Psychologists from the Warwick Business School in the UK has found that the wearing of face masks significantly increases carelessness where personal hygiene is concerned and causes people to basically ignore social distancing.
The study of 800 people found that they are lulled into a false sense of security when wearing a face mask, making them much more likely to dismiss other, better ways of countering the spread of coronavirus.
The psychologists noted that people were more relaxed and comfortable sitting or standing in groups, so long as they had a mask on, and that individuals start to disregard keeping their distance from others who are also wearing face masks.
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The research also noted that these effects were more pronounced among people who believe that masks are effective against the spread of the virus.
"Our findings appear to be a classic case of risk compensation," noted cognitive psychologist Ashley Luckman, one of the researchers, in comments to the Daily Mail.
When wearing masks, "people feel safer and are more willing to take other risks, such as decreasing the physical distance between them and others," added Luckman.