The coronavirus pandemic has caused the world to panic and fear. It has changed our lives tremendously and has infected millions of people all over the world. To minimize the spread of SARS-CoV-2, the virus responsible for COVID-19, experts have come up with safety protocols that everyone should follow.
The best way to avoid getting the virus is to stay home. But when going out is necessary, experts say that you should wear a face mask. There are several types of face masks available. Surgical masks and N95 masks are ideal for healthcare workers but even members of the public use surgical masks and N95 masks on a daily basis.
What is a surgical mask?
A surgical mask is a disposable face mask with a loose fit and covers the user’s chin, mouth, and nose. It is worn to protect the user from large droplets, sprays, and splashes of body fluids that may contain bacteria and viruses. A surgical mask also blocks the wearer’s respiratory secretions and prevents them from infecting objects, surfaces, and other people nearby.
Surgical masks have different designs but they are typically rectangular and flat. A surgical mask can be identified by its folds and pleats. It may come with elastic bands or straight ties that hold the mask while it is worn. Bands and ties are either placed behind the ears or tied behind the head.
Should you use a surgical mask?
Like N95 masks, a surgical mask is best reserved for healthcare workers who need them the most. However, using a surgical mask does help slow down the spread of COVID-19. A lot of COVID-19 cases come from asymptomatic or pre-symptomatic individuals who do not know they have the virus. A surgical mask blocks the wearer’s respiratory droplets so that it wouldn’t infect close contacts or contaminate objects and surfaces.
It is also a good idea to use a surgical mask when you are showing symptoms of COVID-19. Wear a surgical mask if you live with others or you are visiting a doctor. A surgical mask will trap infectious respiratory droplets and prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2.
To wear a surgical mask, follow these steps:
- Before handling a surgical mask, make sure your hands are clean. Wash your hands with soap and water or rub your hands with a sanitizer.
- Inspect the surgical mask for any tears or holes before putting it on.
- Look for the metal strip. This metal strip is the top of the surgical mask.
- Orient the surgical mask so the colored side faces away from you.
- Put the metal strip on the top of your nose bridge and mold the strip to the shape of your nose.
- If your surgical mask has elastic bands, place the bands behind your ears. If it comes with ties, tie them behind your head.
- Pull the bottom of the surgical mask to cover your nose, mouth, and chin.
- Do not touch the surgical mask once you have worn it. If you need to adjust your surgical mask, wash your hands immediately after.
- After using your surgical mask, discard it in a closed trash bin and clean your hands after.
Best USA owned surgical masks sellers
When shopping for surgical masks, make sure to do your research before adding them to your cart. You will come across different surgical mask sellers, offering different products at varied prices. If you want to get your money’s worth, go for the best USA owned surgical mask sellers. Here are some of the top USA owned surgical mask sellers worth checking out.
- 3M is an American manufacturer that specializes in cleaning products, safety products, insulation tapes, and many more. 3M also manufactures different surgical masks and N95 masks and supplies them to countries all over the world. 3M is one of the largest surgical mask and N95 mask manufacturers in the United States and is certainly a good choice for anyone.
- Kimberly-Clark Corporation is an American company whose products are available in 175 countries. They produce surgical masks, N95 masks, filters, gloves, and many more. They also manufacture paper towels and surgical gowns. Kimberly-Clark offers masks in different sizes, including those for kids.
- Honeywell manufactures and supplies surgical masks in the United States. Based in Santa Ana, California, Honeywell produces surgical masks, N95 masks, cartridges, mask filters, and oxygen masks.
- BD is a leading manufacturer of medical equipment in the United States. Based in New Jersey, the company produces surgical masks, N95 masks, face shields, and much other protective gear. BD also contributes to coronavirus research.
- Moldex-Metric, Inc has its headquarters in Culver City, California. The company manufactures medical products and equipment. They manufacture surgical masks, N95 masks, face shields, and foldable masks. They supply their products to countries around the world with Germany and the US as their largest markets.
Whether you purchase your surgical mask online or from a physical shop, what is important is to buy a genuine surgical mask made by reliable manufacturers. Surgical masks play an integral role in stopping the spread of COVID-19 and you have to wear only real ones that effectively trap your respiratory secretions.
Finally, once you receive your surgical mask, handle it properly. As surgical masks are considered disposable, discard your surgical mask after using it. Also, always practice social distancing and wash your hands frequently. Wearing a surgical mask alone won’t stop the virus. You have to religiously apply other safety measures to effectively stop the spread of COVID-19 and protect yourself and your loved ones.