If you want to learn how to wear an N95 mask correctly in order to protect yourself against poor air quality levels, bacteria in the air, or the novel coronavirus that’s going around, this article is for you.
Nowadays, many people from everyday service industry workers to medical professionals are turning to N95 masks for protection against the coronavirus.
Designed to filter out viral or harmful particles, the N95 face mask becomes the most comfortable, lightweight, and relatively inexpensive way you can guarantee yourself clean breathing air.
However, there are some things you should know before you even buy a respirator.
First, make sure you try different sizes and you’re aware of sizing proportions to ensure you get a good fit.
Depending on the individual N95 mask you’re choosing, there may be available sizes ranging from small to medium to large. If possible, you should try on a couple of different sizes before you purchase a mask. The purpose of this mask is to tightly fit around your face, and N95 face masks are designed to mold into your face for an even tighter fit. If you’re not sure about the proper sizing, keep in mind it’s better to have a smaller mask than a larger one.
Second, make sure you stock up on face masks so you’ll always have one when you need them.
Face masks usually have large spikes in demand and sell out quickly when they’re necessary – like we’re seeing now during the COVID-19 pandemic. During outbreaks of infectious disease or intense regional air pollution, face masks become a scarce resource. If you want to always be prepared and have face masks in handy for yourself and your family, make sure you stock up or buy in bulk to get the most inexpensive option possible.
Take into account your local environment when stocking up on face masks. If you live in a city with notable air pollution, you will likely need more masks than if you live in an environment with cleaner air.
Now let’s move on the correct usage and placement of these masks to ensure the highest degree of safety and effectiveness.
All our information about the correct usage, placement, and safety guidelines when using a respirator have been provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (Source)
STEP # 1 – PUTTING ON YOUR RESPIRATOR CORRECTLY
- Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and warm water.
- Position your respirator in your hands with the nose piece at your fingertips.
- Cup the mask in your hand and place it over your mouth and nose. Your mask should be in the palm of your hand with the straps facing the floor. Once you get it over your nose and mouth, the nosepiece should be fitting just over the bridge of your nose while the bottom should be reaching just below your chin.
- The top strap goes over and rests at the top (and back) of your head. The bottom strap has to be placed around the neck and just below the ears. Do not crisscross your face mask straps.
- Place your fingertips on the top of the metal nose clip (if there is one.) Slide your fingertips down both sides of the metal strip to mold the nose area into your nose shape.
STEP # 2 – CHECKING YOUR SEAL
Checking your N95’s seal means breathing through the masks and testing it for leaks. To do this, set both hands against the mask and take a breath so you can find out if your seal is tight around your face. When you exhale, be aware of any leakage from around the edges of the N95 and its nosepiece. If you feel air leaking from your nosepiece area, re-mold it. If you feel leakage from the edges of your mask, adjust the placement of your straps on both sides of the head.
- Place both hands over the respirator, then take a breath, and check whether it is sealed tightly around your face.
- Place both hands firmly over the respirator, then exhale. If you feel leakage, you do not have a proper seal.
- If air leaks around your nose, readjust your nosepiece as noted above. If air leaks around the edges of your mask, readjust the traps until you get a proper seal.
- If you cannot achieve a proper seal, try a different size/model or ask for help.
STEP # 3 – REMOVING YOUR RESPIRATOR SAFELY
- Do not touch the front of your respirator.
- Remove your respirator by pulling the bottom strap over the back of your head, followed by the top strap.
- Discard your respirator in a container and wash your hands thoroughly.
Where to buy N95 respirators and face masks?
If you’re looking to buy N-95 respirator face masks:
Browse Clinical Supplies USA’s collection of N95 respirators in our store here.
If you’re looking to purchase wholesale face masks for sale/distribution to your local community:
Reach out to us and inquire for any purchase above 2,000 units here.
Clinical Supplies USA is an American co-owned and run company specializing in providing quality protective supplies such as KN95 and 3ply masks, hand sanitizers, face shields, gloves, and more.