Showing posts with label facemask. Show all posts
Showing posts with label facemask. Show all posts

Monday, June 24, 2013

N95 Respirators and Facemask


What is respirator?

 A respirator is a device designed to protect the wearer from inhaling harmful dusts, fumes, vapors, or gases. Respirators come in a wide range of types and sizes used by the military, private industry, and the public. Respirators range from cheaper, single-use, disposable masks to reusable models with replaceable cartridges.

There are two main categories: the air-purifying respirator, which forces contaminated air through a filtering element, and the air-supplied respirator, in which an alternate supply of fresh air is delivered. Within each category, different techniques are employed to reduce or eliminate noxious airborne contents.

What is a Facemask?

Loose-fitting, disposable masks that cover the nose and mouth are called facemasks. Products labeled as surgical, dental, medical procedure, isolation, and laser masks are included in this grouping.

Facemasks help stop droplets from being distributed by the person wearing them. As well they keep splashes or sprays from reaching the mouth and nose of the person wearing the facemask. They aren’t intended to protect you against breathing in minute particles and should be used one time and then thrown away in the garbage.

Surgical Masks

Surgical masks offer protection against pathogens carried by large respiratory droplets that can contaminate the mucous membranes. These masks are at times also called isolation, procedure, or laser masks and they are:
  • Made of soft materials and are comfortable to wear
  • Designed to loosely cover up the mouth and nose
  • Typically strapped behind the head
Surgeons and other operating room personnel wear surgical masks to prevent organisms in their noses and mouths from falling into the sterile area and potentially causing surgical site infections. They also offer protection against body fluid splashes to the nose and mouth. Seeing as surgical masks don’t have a sealing surface and are only loose fitting, they give only minimal protection from respiratory prone particles.

N95  Respirators

N95 respirator is Particulate Respirator Filters which filter at least 95% of airborne particles and
not oil resistant.

N95 Respirators

What is Particulate Respirators?

 Particulate Respirators is one of respirator type. Effective July 1995 new performance criteria were established for particulate respirators. The new criteria eliminates classification of particulate filters according to hazard such as "dust mist fume" and provides for three levels of filter efficiency (95%, 99%, 99.97%).These efficiencies are available in a series of filter types known as N, R, and P. These new respirators will afford a higher level of protection to a variety of workers including hospital employees needing protection from infectious tuberculosis, carpenters, painters, and farmers. NIOSH has established a three year transition period for instituting the new regulation. After July 10, 1998 all particulate respirators will have to be certified under the new criteria.

 United States NIOSH standards define the following categories of particulate filters:

Oil resistance Rating Description
Not oil resistant N95 Filters at least 95% of airborne particles
N99 Filters at least 99% of airborne particles
N100 Filters at least 99.97% of airborne particles
Oil Resistant R95 Filters at least 95% of airborne particles
R99* Filters at least 99% of airborne particles
R100* Filters at least 99.97% of airborne particles
Oil Proof P95 Filters at least 95% of airborne particles
P99 Filters at least 99% of airborne particles
P100 Filters at least 99.97% of airborne particles
*No NIOSH approvals are held by this type of disposable particulate respirator.

What you should know before using surgical masks and surgical N95 respirators

• The use of surgical masks and surgical N95 respirators alone will not fully protect you from acquiring an infection.

• Other infection control practices such as hand-washing, isolating infected patients, and practicing appropriate coughing etiquette, are also important to minimize your risk of infection.

• Surgical N95 respirators must be fit properly. A surgical N95 respirator that has not been fitted properly may leave unprotected gaps between the respirator and your face. These gaps will impair the respirator's effectiveness. Facial hair or unusual facial features make it difficult to fit surgical N95 respirators properly.

• Be aware that surgical masks are not fit-tested to your face and may leave unprotected gaps between the mask and your face.

• Be aware that masks lose their protective properties and must be changed when they become wet from saliva or respiratory secretions.

• Know that surgical masks and surgical N95 respirators are not tested against specific microorganisms and should not claim to prevent specific diseases.

• Never reuse surgical masks or surgical N95 respirators.

• Never wash or disinfect surgical masks or surgical N95 respirators.

• Never share surgical masks or surgical N95 respirators with others.

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