The N95 respirator is a particulate filter mask that prevents the wearer from inhaling hazardous airborne particles. These airborne particles include dust, dirt, bacteria, and mud, etc. The N95 mask is 95 percent efficient at the filtration of harmful airborne particles. The N95 mask prevents an individual from inhaling harmful airborne particles into his body or lungs.
Therefore, N95 respirators are safer than other respirators. This is because the N95 respirator is 95 percent efficient at filtering out harmful airborne particles whose size is smaller than 0.3um. No mask or respirator filters out airborne particles as the N95 mask does. The N95 respirator has been considered the safest and the best Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
Inhaling such harmful airborne particles could cause viral diseases to an individual. Wearing the N95 mask has been necessary during COVID-19 to protect oneself from getting infected from COVID-19 as this viral disease could have adverse effects on a person’s health. Inhaling such airborne particles could weaken an individual’s immune system as well.
N95 masks that may do more harm than good
Experts warned the public that certain kinds of N95 masks could pose a threat to an individual’s health. Such N95 masks protect the person who is wearing an N95 mask, but those N95 masks might not protect the person who is standing near the N95 mask wearer. All the N95 masks do not have the same features; some masks are somewhat different, and some masks are entirely different.
Those certain kinds of N95 respirators are those that come with a valve. The N95 respirator with a valve protects the person who is wearing the N95 mask, but they do not protect the people who are near the N95 respirator wearer. If an infected individual is wearing the N95 respirator and the individual exhales oxygen (exhale of the infected individual has a lot of harmful airborne particles), the person near the N95 mask wearer could inhale those harmful airborne particles and get infected.
Because such harmful airborne particles could adversely affect an individual, it has been recommended by experts to not use N95 masks with valves. These types of N95 masks are used by construction workers and miners because they have to come across a lot of dust, mud, and dirt particles to work as a construction worker.
The San Francisco Department of Public Health warned the public on Twitter by saying that such N95 masks could adversely affect the health of the public when it comes to COVID-19. They said that the N95 masks with valves or slight openings can harm the people standing near the N95 mask wearer. This is because the N95 mask wearer can propel the bacteria and germs, and the experts have considered such N95 masks unsafe.
Valves of such N95 masks permit the germs and bacteria to release from the mask, which puts others at risk. In addition to that, major healthcare officials also confirmed that such N95 respirators do not offer proper filtration and could spread the virus if people wore such N95 masks. Therefore, wearing N95 respirators with valves has been considered unsafe by The San Francisco Department of Public Health.
These N95 respirators are keeping other people at risk. The healthcare officials, who had purchased N95 masks with valves, had to wear another N95 respirator on that N95 mask with a valve. This is because those healthcare officials had not known about such an important fact when they bought this N95 mask. Therefore, they had to put another N95 mask on top of the N95 mask with a valve.
3M manufactured an N95 respirator model whose name was 3M 8511 respirator. On the website, 3M says that this N95 mask is effective at protecting the wearer from particles like dust, dirt, and mud, etc. This N95 mask was designed to protect the N95 mask wearer in situations where the wearer has to protect himself; this N95 mask was not made for the wearer if he is at risk of transmitting bacteria and viruses to others.
This N95 mask model has a valve that makes it comfortable for the individual to breathe. In addition to that, a valve in an N95 mask decreases the warmness of an individual’s face. This is what makes the N95 mask less hot for the wearer. This N95 respirator is used for grinding, sowing, mowing, and sweeping purposes.
Some wildfires broke out in California, and because of that, some people had the N95 mask with a valve since the smoke that comes out of a wildfire is not contagious. A lot of people had such types of N95 masks in their possession because of the wildfires. There are several N95 masks with valves that are available on the internet. Since there has been a shortage of N95 masks in the United States, people would think that they are lucky to find an N95 mask with a valve.
Since they are not aware of the fact that the N95 mask with a valve could affect their health adversely, they would purchase it. This would cause COVID-19 to spread, and more people would get infected because of this mistake. Therefore, experts have recommended that the N95 masks with valves must be avoided at all costs when it comes to protection against contagious diseases like COVID-19 and the influenza virus, etc.