Both surgical and Kn95 face masks are perfect examples of personal protective gear. Both are utilized for safeguarding the wearer from the liquid that can contaminate the face and airborne particles. It is essential to note that the best way to outmaneuver airborne transmission is using a combination of related interventions.
• A surgical mask can be defined as a loose-fitting and not reusable device that builds a physical barricade between the nose and mouth of the wearer and contaminants in the immediate surrounding. In addition, they are labeled as either surgical, dental, medical procedure or isolation masks. Surgical masks should not be shared.
• Surgical masks contain three layers, including a mixture of non woven material. The middle layer contains melted brown fabric which performs as a filter.
• They have different ability to protect the wearer from coming into contact with liquids and they come in different thickness.
• They are meant to assist in blocking splashes, splatter, large-particle droplets, and sprays that contain bacteria and viruses (germs) if worn appropriately. They also help in minimizing the exposure of wearer’s respiratory secretions and saliva to others.
• The surgical mask does not block or filter small particles that can be transmitted through sneezes, coughs, and other medical procedures. Additionally, because of the loose fit linking the wearer’s face and the surface of the mask, it does not give full protection from microbes.
• Leakage can occur around the edge of a surgical mask when the user inhales.
• They are intended to cover the nose and mouth loosely, are not sized for personal fit, and are designed to be worn just once
• Kn95 mask or respirator can be described as a piece of respiratory protecting equipment that is designed to attain a close facial fit and competent filtration of airborne elements.
• They are designed to prevent and minimize the wearer’s exposure to airborne contaminants.
• Dissimilar from surgical masks which one size is meant to fit all, Kn95 masks are available in different sizes and can be chosen based on how best it fits the users face to create a tight seal.
• It is expensive compared to surgical masks, and it is not recommended for kids or small-sized teenagers.
• Unlike surgical masks, it is intended to filter smaller contaminants. Many Kn95 masks contain a filter at the front which forces air to be filtered, making them more effective.
• When properly donned and fitted, only minimal leakage occurs around the edge of a Kn95 mask when the user inhales.
• Have particular use instructions, limitations, and warnings, especially in healthcare facilities.
Both Kn95 and surgical masks should be disposed after each person encounter. In addition, they should be disposed when they become deformed, damaged, or contaminated with respiratory secretions, blood, among other bodily fluids. Also, if they don’t make an effective seal to your face any longer, becomes visibly dirty or wet, and when breathing through them becomes problematic. Like any other elements that pollutes and contaminates the environment, both kn95 and surgical masks should be discarded safely. It is also essential to clean the hands after handling the worn mask.