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The coronavirus’s fear has got people to utilize a surgical face mask to cover themselves for protection. It is also obligatory to wear these in many countries these days. But the question is that are they really helpful in granting you full-fledged protection against the viruses?
For the basic protection of the nose and mouth, a mask constructed of a very thin paper knotted with ribbons behind the ears is used solely in operating wards. Healthcare professionals and associates usually carry this face mask to avoid germs and viruses to prevent infections from transmitting to and from their patients on the examination table. For example, if the mask user sneezes or coughs, several particles from the mouth and throat get trapped in the mask.
However, this can only be effective in the long term if the mask is replaced periodically and discarded off hygienically and healthily. Doctors are required to replace their masks after two hours of use during surgery. But, if this sort of mask is worn over and over again, it loses its functionality.
Types of Masks:
When it comes to your personal use of the mask as a shield against the virus, you will come across three variations of face masks in general. We will take you down the lane of all facts and figures so that you can choose the most effective one against the virus.
These masks include:
- Surgical Masks
- Half Masks
- Gas Masks
The mask users can shield themselves from particles and smear infections but only to a very slight degree. Though the virus normally reaches the body via the eyes or mouth — when no open wounds are present — the hands perform the most significant part in transmitting the virus.
If you aim to use a mask, you might have to look for safety goggles as well. The surgical face masks are not highly protective in case of prevention from viruses as these do not cover your eyes or seal your face tightly.
Besides surgical masks, which uses multiple disposable layers to protect your nose and mouth, half masks that include effective filters are also available. The people who work in conditions that include plenty of dust and aerosols are more acquainted with these. You will come across two variations in them. These disposable masks are made from hard compressed cellulose with a filter feature and an exhalation mechanism, or plastic material having a filter inserted in it.
In 1914, Garret Morgan, an American, created a gas mask. The gas mask is intended primarily to protect the wearer against poisonous, toxic, and quite lethal gases. Why it works amazingly well against viruses is because it actually covers the users’ mouth, eyes (sometimes), and nose by sealing their face properly. It will supply fresh and pure oxygen via a hose attached from the mask to a respirator, which carries and retains the filtered oxygen, based on the kind of gas mask you possess.
Gas masks are designed to fully cover your face whilst enabling you to breathe through filters and valves. The best part about gas masks is that they not just protect the portion of your mouth or nose but also fully protect your eyes by covering them up. You can check our guide about the best military gas masks if you are looking for full protection with a military grade to survive pandemics and survive chemical & biological attacks.
These top-quality gas filtration masks can protect the user from viruses because of their sealing design — much more so than plain surgical masks. Hence, such masks are relatively effective against a highly contagious pathogen or virus. However, it is, therefore, necessary to note that the defense is not only focused on masks but also includes adequate sanitation.
These masks may also be used in conjunction with other protective apparel and protection steps. They can also be used in quarantine facilities since they are extremely defensive against certain issues.
How to choose the best gas mask to shield against the virus?
Before you head out to pick up a gas mask, respirator from the supermarket, you need to check in on a variety of factors that will aid you in selecting the best one. As these can be used as an effective tool against the virus, it is crucial for you to buy the perfect one. So, let’s have a peek at each of those considerations without further delay.
As with the coverage of the mask, there is also a large variety of respirators; the full-face variation, as well as the half-masked respirators, are available. As the virus can get you infected via eyes, mouth, and nose, choosing a full-face coverage model will be a wiser option. This will provide added protection and ensure high effectiveness against pathogens.
You would also need to remember the kind of material that was used to create the piece as it impacts the longevity of the mask and also its comfort. This is necessary, as the likelihood of poor quality gas mask models available in the market is a common problem. Most of those finest gas masks are constructed of butyl rubber or silicone and polycarbonate lenses.
Clear visibility is what would be need of all the time. So, it is vital for you to go for an option that comes with a high-quality lens so that you can get a wider view angle. Moreover, look for an anti-fogging feature, as this factor can create serious problems for you while wearing the mask.
If you are going to use your gas mask to protect yourself from the harmful viruses, you would never want to make a compromise on your ease in communicating. Especially if you are to use this mask at quarantine centers, you may have to communicate with different people of the staff. Therefore, it is critical for you to go for a model that comes with installed speech diaphragm so that you do not find it hard to communicate while wearing it.
Featured Drinking System:
Protection from viruses also demands you to stay hydrated. However, you cannot risk your life by taking off the mask to drink water every now and then. To facilitate you, these gas masks come with integrated drinking systems in them. You will be having a knob in it, which upon turning on, will allow you to sip water via a tube or pipe without taking the whole mask off your face.
Times are hard, and a healthy life demands you to take proper care of yourself. There are several germs around us. For leading an infection-free life, certain precautionary measures can be useful. Using a gas mask can effectively shield you from getting attacked by harmful viruses. Look for certain essential features for your ease as well.