The World Health Organization (WHO) has issued guidelines stating that children over 12 should wear masks, according to recommended practice for adults in their country or region.
He admits that little is known about how children transmit the virus, but cites evidence that teens can infect others the same way adults do.
Children aged five and under should not normally wear masks, the WHO said.
More than 800,000 people have died from the coronavirus worldwide today.
At least 23 million cases of infection have been recorded, according to Johns Hopkins University, with most of them recorded in the United States, Brazil and India.
However, the actual number of people who have had the virus is believed to be much higher, due to insufficient testing and asymptomatic cases.
The numbers rose again in countries as diverse as South Korea, EU states and Lebanon.
WHO chief Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus has said he hopes the pandemic will be over in two years, but a high-level scientific adviser in the UK has warned that Covid-19 may never be eradicated, people who need regular vaccinations.
What are the WHO recommendations for children and masks?
The advice posted on the WHO website covers three age groups:
- Children 12 and over must wear a mask under the same conditions as adults, especially when they cannot guarantee a distance of at least one meter from each other and there is widespread transmission in the area
- For children aged 6 to 11, WHO advises taking into account the extent of transmission of the virus and whether the child interacts with high-risk people such as the elderly. It also emphasizes the need for adult supervision to help children use, put on and take off masks safely.
- Children aged five and under should not, under normal circumstances, wear masks
For teachers, the WHO says: “In areas where transmission is widespread, all adults under the age of 60 who are generally in good health should wear sheet masks when they cannot guarantee a safe distance. ‘at least a meter from others.
“This is especially important for adults working with children who may have close contact with children and with each other. ”
Adults aged 60 or older, or those with underlying health conditions, should wear medical masks, he says.
In England face covers in appropriate settings are recommended for children over 11 years old.