What is a face mask?
Face masks are just one of the many tools used for the prevention of spreading disease. There are many variations of face masks available, each with their own benefits and features offering varying levels of protection. Its always important to use a face mask that has CE and FDA approval, meaning that the agency has determined that the “benefits of the product outweigh the known risks for the intended use.” Manufacturers must submit a premarket approval (PMA) application and the results of clinical testing in order to get approval.
How to wear a face mask?
The correct way to wear a surgical mask is with the coloured side of the mask facing the outside.
Regardless of whether you are wearing the mask because you are sick and don’t want to infect other people, or are wearing it to prevent yourself from becoming infected, face masks should always be worn with the coloured side facing out.
As the whole world reacts to the spread of the highly contagious coronavirus, many have been sharing tips and messages on how to avert contracting this all too often fatal virus.
There is a common misconception about the correct way to wear a face mask, many people are suggesting to wear the coloured side facing outside if you’re sick and the white side outside if you want to “stop the germs from getting in”. This is however false, surgical masks are usually worn by frontline healthcare workers in order to prevent infections transmitted by respiratory droplets that are expelled from either coughing or sneezing.
The outermost layer of the surgical face mask is a hydrophobic or a fluid-repelling layer, while the inner layer is there to absorb any moisture, as naturally the air we breathe out contains moisture.
There is also typically a middle layer that filters the bacteria and contaminates.
The purpose of the blue or green layer is to stop germs from sticking to it. So if you wear the mask the other way as wrongly suggested by many, the moisture from the air will stick onto it, making it easier for germs to stay there. And so when you breathe in, the germs will transfer from the outside later and straight into your lungs.
How to remove a face mask?
- Wash your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser before touching the mask. be sure to avoid touching the front of the mask. Only touch the ear loops/ties/band. Follow the instructions below for the mask type you are using.
- Face Mask with Earloops: Hold both of the ear loops and gently lift and remove the mask.
- Face Mask with Ties: Untie the bottom bow first then untie the top bow and pull the mask away from you as the ties are loosened.
- Face Mask with Bands: Lift the bottom band over your head first then pull the top band over your head.
- Throw the mask in the bin. Wash your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser.