Measures to protect students from the coronavirus (like mask mandates) end up harming them
By Ramon Tomey // Jul 11, 2021

Public health measures to curb the spread of the Wuhan coronavirus (COVID-19) such as mask mandates ended up causing more harm than the disease itself. Children especially were greatly affected by these restrictions as they were implemented in schools and subsequently impacted their mental, social and emotional development. Despite children having a very high COVID-19 survival rate – 99.997 percent – authorities still mandated that they mask up, maintain social distance and attend classes virtually.


Centner Academy co-founder and CEO Leila Centner elaborated the effect of COVID-19 restrictions on children during the Advanced Medicine Conference held last May 30. According to the head of the Miami-based school, the school did not require their students to mask up during the pandemic – yet it did not have any hospitalizations from the disease. Centner added that while the eponymous academy had COVID-19 cases, most that occurred among students were asymptomatic.

During the event, Centner presented a video from ophthalmologist and preventive medicine specialist Dr. Jim Meehan. He conducted an evidence-based scientific analysis on masks – and found that healthy people should not wear face coverings as they could be harmful. Meehan also warned in the video that the mandate requiring children to wear masks is experimental.

He mentioned the different health problems children risk contracting while wearing masks. These included facial rashes, dental problems, oral ulcers, cavities, throat abscesses, anxiety, panic attacks and difficulty breathing. Meehan's findings followed 17 risks of mask-wearing he earlier outlined. Some of his earlier discoveries regarding masks included how they negatively affect respiratory functions, how they lower oxygen and increase carbon dioxide levels in the blood and how they collect and colonize other pathogens.

Centner also featured New York pediatrician Dr. Lawrence Palevsky who warned about the negative effect of face masks on children's brain development. According to the children's doctor, masks promote fear, stress, panic and anxiety similar to the brain's "fight or flight" response. This subsequently affects children's cognitive development negatively, Palevsky added.

Fortunately, states are standing up to mask mandates for children

Researchers from Germany's Witten/Herdecke University established an online registry for individuals to enter their observations about mask-wearing in children. Based on data from 25,930 children, the researchers found 24 health issues stemming from face masks. A majority of parents reported that their children experienced different issues from wearing face coverings. These included irritability, headache and difficulty in concentration. (Related: Five-year-olds told to wear face masks in the classroom.)

Many states have seen the risk of making children wear face masks in schools, which led to these mandates being banned as a result of public outcry. Republican states have led the effort to prohibit face coverings for children.

The state of Iowa banned masks in schools back in May 2021. According to the Des Moines Register, lawmakers endorsed a bill prohibiting school district heads in the Hawkeye State from requiring students or staff members to wear face coverings. The measure passed the Iowa Legislature on May 20, with Gov. Kim Reynolds immediately signing it into law.

The Iowa governor said in a statement: "The state … is putting parents back in control of their child's education and taking greater steps to protect the rights of all Iowans to make their own health care decisions."

The state of Florida also enacted a ban on mask mandates in schools, local news channel WPTV 5 reported. A memo sent by the state's Education Commissioner Richard Corcoran said that face masks should be voluntary for the 2021-2022 school year. "Face coverings are a personal decision and certainly, families and individuals should maintain their ability to make a decision … unique to their circumstances. [Mandatory] face-covering policies serve no remaining good at this point in our schools," he wrote.

Corcoran's sentiments echoed that of Gov. Ron DeSantis regarding face masks. The governor of the Sunshine State said during a May 11 news conference: "These kids do not need to be wearing these masks. We need to be able to let them be kids and let them act normally."

Utah also announced that it will no longer require students to mask up. "We now have the ability for those that have concerns about the virus to protect ourselves much more. We have better masks available and opportunities for people to make those decisions," Gov. Spencer Cox told the Associated Press last May 6. (Related: Utah governor says students will no longer be required to mask up.)

Following the announcement, the governor added that students in the Beehive State with a higher risk of infection will have more options to protect themselves. They can either wear N95 masks while attending in-person classes or continue distance learning if their school offers it.

Visit to read more about the effects of COVID-19 mask mandates on children.

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