Living in this unprecedented pandemic, many people have reached for face masks to stay safe and to decrease the risk of spread. The demand for medical face masks in Westlake Village, CA has created a mask shortage among the public and for essential workers.
There are two types of masks used in preventing infections: surgical masks and respirator masks. It’s important to know the difference, and which situations they’re useful in, as well as when other wellness hygiene tactics might better serve you.
However, many experts are saying that respirator masks, and maybe even surgical masks, are not always the best route for warding off infection, and in the case of coronavirus, the CDC is specifically advising that people don’t need to wear face masks unless you are a health care or essential worker.
Surgical masks and respirator masks serve different purposes, so they are designed differently. Surgical masks are basically small pieces of cloth people use to keep the germs from their coughs and sneezes to themselves, or to prevent picking up other people’s viruses and bacteria. It’s basically a physical barrier to prevent major amounts of fluid from accessing your mouth.
Respirator masks are more sturdily designed than surgical masks, and they contain a respirator that prevents much smaller particles from passing through to a person’s respiratory system. Two of the most common respirator masks are N-95 masks and N-99 masks, which, when used correctly, prevent 95% and 99%, respectively, of airborne particles from entering a person’s mouth or nose.
Because they filter out smaller particles, respirator masks also typically protect against different kinds of pathogens. Surgical masks protect against droplet-spread infections, like influenza and other common respiratory infections. N-95 and N-99 respirator masks can protect against airborne illnesses like measles, chickenpox, or tuberculosis.
As most illnesses are spread by droplets, a respirator mask is considered a higher-level method of protection only needed for airborne illnesses. If doctors aren’t sure about the way a disease spreads, like in the early stages of an outbreak, doctors would recommend a higher level of protection with a respirator mask.
But a mask is rarely the only barrier. Healthcare workers also need additional personal protective equipment (PPE) such as hand sanitizer (with 65% alcohol), vinyl and nitrile gloves, medical gowns, surgical head covers, foot covers, face shields, and other sanitary practices to prevent spreading and protecting yourself from germs. A mask is rarely used by itself; it’s almost always used as part of a system where we have multiple barriers against any infectious particles.
Since masks aren’t necessarily the most effective way to prevent infection, the best way to decrease the risk is to focus on handwashing with soap and water, maintaining a safe distance from others, and use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
Conveniently located in Westlake Village, CA, please stop by Apollo HomeCare Supply and we will assist you with your mask needs as we carry regular cotton masks, surgical masks, N-95 masks and all of your other PPE needs such as hand sanitizer (with 65% alcohol), vinyl and nitrile gloves, medical gowns, surgical head covers, foot covers and face shields. We specialize and have a huge supply of Bathroom safety products, Blood glucose monitors, Canes and crutches, CPAP devices, Incontinence, infection prevention (Gloves, masks, gowns, etc.), homecare beds, Lift chairs, Mobility power scooters, Nebulizer equipment, orthotics (Splints, Bracing & Supports), oxygen concentrators, Walkers, knee walkers and rollators, essential oils, yoga supplies, wheelchairs and power wheelchairs and Wound care products.