How Do Face Masks Work?


At the start of the pandemic, there were mixed messages on whether or not the public should be wearing face masks. This left many wondering if face masks work and why they should bother wearing one. The good news is, they do help protect us! While the guidelines for COVID-19 may be rapidly developing, and confusing us all, we can look to other well established healthcare guidelines to understand how face masks protect us from becoming infected and infecting others. So, what exactly do these masks do?

  1. They keep your respiratory droplets from spreading to others! 

The CDC outlines three transmission-based precautions to help stop the spread of various pathogens: contact, droplet, and airborne. A pathogen is the agent that causes a disease, and different pathogens use different methods to spread. Surgical masks are a key protective measure in droplet precautions and airborne precautions. Surgical masks are routinely used in healthcare settings to prevent the spread of infections such as influenza, pneumonia, and meningitis. In what the CDC terms “source control”, they outline that the infected individual should wear a mask to help prevent transmission.

Many viruses and bacteria, such as the ones previously listed, are spread through respiratory droplets. These respiratory droplets are generated when a person is coughing, sneezing, or talking. That’s right, even just by talking! If you are infected, the pathogen can travel through your respiratory droplets and be transmitted to people around you, or they can contaminate surfaces. So, in the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, you may be an unaware vector of the disease and wearing a mask helps you keep your droplets to yourself when interacting with others.

  1. They protect you from infected individuals!

In regards to the same CDC transmission-based precautions, specific personal protective equipment can be used to decrease your chances of contracting various pathogens. When viruses and bacteria spread by respiratory droplets, those droplets infect you by traveling into your mouth, nose, and eyes. Wearing a mask properly helps block infectious particles from finding a home in your mouth and nose. COVID-19, in most cases, is believed to be spread by respiratory droplets. Thus, wearing a mask can help reduce your risk of contracting the disease.

Now that we know how face masks protect us, it is important to note that different masks can offer different levels of protection. The American Society of Testing and Materials (ASTM) is an international standards organization that develops technical standards for many different fields-including healthcare. They put face masks through a series of five tests to determine what standards they meet. These tests are: Bacterial filtration, particle filtration, synthetic blood splatter, flammability, and breathability. Based on specific criteria, the masks are sorted into one of three levels after they are tested. Level 1 offers the lowest level of protection, while level 3 offers the highest. Patriot Medical Devices offers masks that have been tested and proven to function at the ASTM 3 standard. Patriot masks offer the highest level of protection against particles and fluids, while also being comfortable to wear!

References

Transmission Based Precautions.

https://www.cdc.gov/infectioncontrol/basics/transmission-based-precautions.html

Modes of transmission of virus causing COVID-19: implications for IPC precaution recommendations.

https://www.who.int/news-room/commentaries/detail/modes-of-transmission-of-virus-causing-covid-19-implications-for-ipc-precaution-recommendations

This article originally appeared on Patriot Medical Devices

Partner Posts

VidLyf Blog is the next generation news portal featuring Latest News, Updates from Technology, Entertainment, Sports, Business, World Politics, Fashion, Lifestyle, Health, etc. Stay Updated, Stay Ahead!


Like it? Share with your friends!

25

What's Your Reaction?

Damn Damn
0
Damn
Cute Cute
0
Cute
Cry Cry
0
Cry
Dislike Dislike
0
Dislike
Like Like
0
Like
Love Love
0
Love
Lol Lol
0
Lol
Win Win
0
Win
WTF WTF
0
WTF
Team VidLyf

Titan

VidLyf Blog is the next generation news portal featuring Latest News, Updates from Technology, Entertainment, Sports, Business, World Politics, Fashion, Lifestyle, Health, etc. Stay Updated, Stay Ahead!

Comments 0

Leave a Reply

You may also like

More From: Lifestyle

DON'T MISS

Choose A Format
Personality quiz
Series of questions that intends to reveal something about the personality
Trivia quiz
Series of questions with right and wrong answers that intends to check knowledge
Poll
Voting to make decisions or determine opinions
Story
Formatted Text with Embeds and Visuals
List
The Classic Internet Listicles
Countdown
The Classic Internet Countdowns
Open List
Submit your own item and vote up for the best submission
Ranked List
Upvote or downvote to decide the best list item
Meme
Upload your own images to make custom memes
Video
Youtube, Vimeo or Vine Embeds
Audio
Soundcloud or Mixcloud Embeds
Image
Photo or GIF
Gif
GIF format