Disposable Face Masks

What are Face Masks?

Face Masks are worn on the face so that you get to breathe only filtered air in an environment that is prone to contain contaminated air. Essentially, face masks are used in environments having excessive pollutants in the air. The pollutants could be dangerous bacteria, paint fumes, or other harmful microorganisms suspended in the air. The face masks are especially useful in a medical facility where the risk of air-borne infections is greater. For instance, patients with influenza related symptoms must be treated or visited after wearing good quality respirator face masks.

Properties of Face Masks

1. Material: The face masks are made from fibrous material. Essentially, the material of the respirator face masks is designed to trap the pollutants and microorganisms, instead of warding them off. So, the dust particles, soot, sawdust, bacteria, germs, etc. get trapped in the mask to provide protection against their harmful effects. Some fumes can, however, penetrate the respirator face masks. The rating of the face masks is based on the material used and the size of particulates they can successfully block. For instance, an N95 rates face mask signifies that the mask can block 95% of the particulate matter. Usually, the rating is used to decide which respirator face mask can be used in a given situation.

2. Disposable: When used in health care facilities and construction sites, the face masks are usually disposable. They need to be replaced by a new one after every patient or a job. There are reusable varieties too, but for healthcare providers, maximum protection against particulates is ensured only by disposable respirator face masks.

3. Comfortable: Generally, face masks are comfortable enough to allow sufficient oxygen to breathe properly. However, there are supplied air respirators that can be used in an environment, which is heavily polluted and the pollutants are intricately mixed up with oxygen in the air. The wearer requires a separate air supply for breathing, as the mask seals the nose and mouth.

Importance of Face Masks

At times, when air borne viral infections, like the deadly SARS, H5N1 Bird Flu, and H1N1 Swine Flu are making lives tougher for the people around the globe, the importance of face masks can never be undermined. It’s not just the healthcare providers and professionals involved in pollution-heavy industry who require protection, but also common people who can catch the infection if it has assumed epidemic proportions.



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