An N95 mask is a widely-used, short-term name for an N95 particulate filtering mask, which is an air-purifying facepiece respirator that satisfies the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) national air quality standards. This type of respirator usually has a dust/pretreated cover to improve its effectiveness against dust and other irritants in particulate size. N95 refers to several different types of N95 masks, including a face mask, an N95 cover mask, a nose mask, and a full-face mask. A cover mask is worn over only the nose, while a nose mask is worn over both the nose and the mouth. A full-face mask is worn entirely over the face, although some N95 filters do have a “satin” liner that can be used on the outside of the mask to deflect or reduce noise.
N95 respirators are available for the office, the home, and the industrial setting. Office respirators are usually made from synthetic fibers that won’t attract dust particles. Industrial respirators, on the other hand, may include materials that are fluorescent in nature, which will attract and trap dust particles even on a non-stop basis. A typical industrial mask will contain at least one filter of a particular size that meets or exceeds EPA standards. There may also be an additional feature, such as a HEPA filter.
For the home, most frequently seen are N95 cover and N95 mask filters that fit over and protect the nose and mouth. A common type of home respirator for the home is the nasal cushion, which fits over the entire head and under the chin, and over the back of the head to enclose the user’s airway. Other types of home respiratory apparatus are often included in the package, such as particulate respirators. These are made from a material that collects and traps dust and other irritants so they don’t enter the user’s lungs.
How one can choose the mask for their need? When it comes to wearing these masks, they are available in several forms. They can be worn over the entire head and face, over the nose and mouth, or as individual units. The type you choose depends on the purpose of your use and the environment where you will be wearing them. For example, when you are using the product in the home or in the working environment, it is better to wear a full face mask. For more protection, especially when working outside, a dust particulate respirator may be needed.
It has been found that the highest levels of workplace exposure occur when the population is working in enclosed spaces or when there is little social distancing. Therefore, office, residential, and industrial use make a difference in the level of risk of illness. A study conducted by researchers at the University of Minnesota reviewed over 700 N95 patients who were involved in a number of different studies. They found that the individuals who were working in a narrow confined space, such as an office, were more likely to have breathing issues than others.
When it comes to the choice of an N95 mask, many people will go with the disposable variety because of their convenience. The masks can be removed easily and replaced with another. However, others, who suffer from respiratory problems, might find the investment in a more durable one like the surgical masks. Surgical masks are made to be worn for prolonged periods of time, often 24 hours a day or more, while N95 disposable masks can only be worn during the hours when the particular office or commercial building is open. However, both types offer excellent protection when it comes to the prevention of dust and other irritants entering the lungs through the nose and mouth. One can easily purchase these masks from online stores like accumed.com for a great deal on prices and quality.