All The Different Types Of Face Masks And Who Should Wear Them During The Corona Virus Pandemic
The debate on masks has created widespread confusion among the medical and scientific community. Initially, people were advised to avoid wearing masks due to the shortage of surgical equipment for doctors and medical staff, although now, many countries have made it mandatory for people to cover their faces when stepping out into public spaces.
The confusion stems from the perspective that most people are unaware of the reasons behind wearing a mask. For the medical community, the purpose of wearing a mask is to protect themselves from catching the virus while treating patients. However, wearing surgical or cloth-based face masks is ineffective and dangerous for doctors and front line medical workers.
Wearing surgical masks is also recommended for the patients of coronavirus, as wearing a mask can limit the infection from escaping into the environment through the respiratory droplets. Since the symptoms of coronavirus are sometimes not apparent, the CDC has made it obligatory for people to wear face masks in areas of public gathering.
As the reasons for wearing face masks are different for every individual, it is important to wear the right type of mask, depending on your situation and your degree of exposure.
Who should wear cloth-based masks?
You can easily purchase cloth-based face masks online, or you can make them at home. Cloth-based face masks should be worn by all individuals when they step out of the house. The main purpose of wearing this type of face mask is to carry out your social responsibility of flattening the curve. Wearing a face mask can protect the environment from any infection that you may potentially be carrying. Additionally, it can also offer you protection by limiting your exposure to contaminated surfaces. In addition to wearing a cloth-face mask, you can also wear disposable gloves when you visit public spaces.
Who should wear surgical masks?
Surgical masks should be reserved for individuals who are taking care of infected individuals, as well as medical professionals who have limited exposure to the virus. Surgical masks are not created to filter out airborne particles, thus doctors and healthcare workers with direct contact with infected individuals should avoid wearing these masks.
Who should wear N 95 respiratory face mask?
The N 95 respiratory face mask is created to filter out ninety-five per cent of all airborne particles. This type of mask is recommended for frontline healthcare workers, who are directly in contact with patients of the coronavirus. The N 95 face mask fits snugly around the mouth, which is why it can prevent leakages and offer protection to the wearer. Due to the shortage of N 95 respiratory masks, it essential to donate and reserve this equipment for medical facilities who are dealing with the treatment of the virus.
Who should wear the P 100 face mask?
A P 100 face mask should also be reserved for the medical community. This type of respiratory mask is oil proof, therefore, it filters out all types of solid and liquid airborne particles. The P 100 face mask can filter out 99.97 per cent of all airborne particles. However, this type of mask can deteriorate swiftly when used in environments constituting of oil-based particles.
Despite providing a seal to the face, face masks cannot offer a complete guarantee of protection to the wearer against the virus. As a result, it is important for people- especially healthcare workers, to take extra preventive measures to protect themselves from exposure to the virus. Preventive measures include washing your hands and maintaining a social distance of at least six feet.