Would like to know different types of myths and facts about “Face Masks” These things you need to know about your Face masks!
Q-1 Do you know what is common types of masks?
1 Cloth mask
2 Surgical masks
Q-2 Do you wonder which mask suits you best for respiration?
The respirators masks –
Q-3 Do you know what the difference between mask and respirator is?
Ans – Mask has loose fit, it doesn’t seal nose & mouth snugly.
During respiration air moves along the edges of the mask, while respirator has tight seal & most of the times air passes only through its material after filtration.
Q-4 Do you know how safe is your mask?
Ans- No, respirators are graded according to their filtration efficiency.
According to the used filter type, type of materials used & additional features
Q-5 You have thought what is the efficiency grading of your mask?
Ans – According to the efficiency of filtration these are usually graded as- 95, 99 & 100.
Means these respirator masks r capable of trapping 95%, 99% & 99.9% of particles, smaller up to the 0.3-micron size.
This grading can also be done as in terms of Filtration efficiency.
P1 (FFP1) – 80%
P2 (FFP2) – 95%
P3 (FFP3) – 99.95%
Q-6 Do you know what’s mean NR or P written over mask?
N – not oil proof
R – oil resistant
P – oil proof
(eg. N 95 is not oil proof)
Q-7 Do you know what is valve? How it helps?
Ans – That valve is nothing but a simple exhalation port with one way valve mechanism, it reduces effort of expiration, reduce heat inside the mask, dissipate humidity & reduce CO2 the amount of from the dead space of mask.
Q-8 You wonders when to use surgical masks?
Ans – Surgical mask or procedure mask is the most common mask used by health workers.
It is not designed to protect wearer from inhaling the air born bacteria & viruses.
It is used to block only large particle droplets, splashes, sprays or splatter.
It also reduces the exposure of wearer’s saliva & respiratory secretions to others. Surgical mask also remind wearer not to touch their mouth/nose which could otherwise transfer virus/bacteria after having touched a contaminated surface.
Q-9 You must be thinking what’s the filtration capacity of surgical masks?
Ans – It can vary between 10-90% according to the manufacturer.
Q-10 Want to have assurance of quality? Need to know this!
Ans – Mask should be certified by the NIOSH (National institute for occupational safety & health) Or
NPPTL (National personal protective technology laboratory)
Q-11 Do you want to know how your cloth mask is effective. Read this!
Ans – Cloth is a woven material thus pore size is bigger than surgical mask which is made up of non woven polypropylene material thus cloth mask is less effective than surgical mask in terms of filtration efficiency.
Q-12 Do really extra layer improve efficacy of cloth mask? Read this to know.
Ans – No, it’s not advisable. Each extra layer adds only 2% of extra protection on the cost of comfort.
Q-13 Can these masks be used routinely?
Ans – Yes these can be used routinely.
Few studies done on normal population concluded that the use of simple mask can decrease the incidence of flu up to 75%.
Few East Asian countries follow the practice of routine use of mask.
Q-14 Can mask be reused?
– Cloth mask can be reused after washing.
– Surgical mask should be discarded after single use or after soiled
– Respirator mask should be discarded when resistance of breathing get increased or get soiled.
Viruses/bacteria’s can grow & flourish inside the reused mask.
Q-15 Read the WHO recommendation for using masks.
For the normal population, any type of mask is not required; maintaining the social distance & hand hygiene are the sufficient.
– Sick person should wear surgical mask.
– Any person who is taking care of sick person should also wear the surgical mask.
– N 95 mask should be used by the person who is potential to get expose with the respiratory secretions of the infected patient. Example – During the Endotracheal intubation, CPR, Ventilation, Bronchoscopy & Tracheostomy