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What Is an N95 Respirator?

April 22, 2021

What Is an N95 Respirator?

N95 is a disposable mask, respirator that can protect employees from inhaling small particles such as dust or mold, but it cannot resist oil pollution. These masks fit very closely. This respirator is designed to prevent at least 95% of particles in the air in the workplace.

Although you may require the use of N95 to prevent employees from inhaling or ingesting particles in your workplace, understand that standard N95 masks are not suitable masks to prevent gas, smoke, or asbestos particles.

However, for high temperature and humid working environments, as well as welding applications, ozone protection, and harmful levels of acid gases and organic vapors, there are also some valve options.

When do I need to replace the N95 respirator?

One of the most common mistakes I saw in the field was that the respirator was damaged or detached, but it was still in use. N95 is disposable. It is difficult to say how long employees can safely wear it, because it depends on the amount of dust and particles in the environment and how often employees adjust.

Normally, employees will wear the mask for a few hours or a working day, but checking that the seal is intact can help determine whether it is time to throw it away and get a new one. If an employee starts to have difficulty breathing after wearing a mask, the mask may be clogged with dust and should be replaced.

Compared with simple cloth masks or surgical masks, N95 respirators have two main advantages. First of all, the N95 mask is more than 95% efficient in filtering 0.3 μm particles. These particles are even smaller than the droplets produced when talking, coughing or sneezing, and can effectively filter out germs and bacteria. N95 fit provides advantages over loose surgical masks by eliminating leakage around the mask. N95 masks usually fit better around the face and neck, ensuring that droplets and particles do not leak around the mask.

The N95 respirator is a respiratory protection device designed to achieve a very tight facial fit and very effective filtration of particulate matter in the air. Please note that the edge of the respirator is to form a seal around the nose and mouth. Surgical N95 respirators are commonly used in health care and are a subset of N95 filtering face mask respirators (FFRs), commonly referred to as N95s.

Patients suffering from chronic respiratory diseases, heart disease or other diseases that cause breathing difficulties should check with medical staff before using N95 respirators, because N95 respirators will make it more difficult for the wearer to breathe.

Some models have an exhalation valve, which can make exhalation easier and help reduce heat build-up. Note that when sterile conditions are required, an N95 respirator with an exhalation valve should not be used.

All N95 masks approved by the FDA are labeled as "single use". If your respirator is damaged or dirty, or you have difficulty breathing, you should remove it, discard it properly, and replace it with a new one. To safely throw away your N95 respirator, put it in a plastic bag and throw it in the trash can.

N95 respirators are not designed for children or people with facial hair. Since children and people with facial hair cannot get proper cooperation, N95 respirators may not provide adequate protection.

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