As the COVID-19 is spreading at an alarming rate in our country and the number of cases intensifying day by day, people are actually concerned to know about the right type of masks and hand sanitizers that they should be using to protect themselves from the SARS-CoV- 2 virus.
The central government health authorities have dispelled some commonly spreading myths about the use of masks. It recommends that individuals with symptoms such as fever, cough and cold, health care workers and the person taking care of home quarantined individuals should wear masks. Also Read: Coronavirus: All You Need To Know About Home Quarantine Guidelines
Government health advisory and medical fraternity say that the best way to shield yourself from becoming infected by SARS-CoV-2 virus is to practice social distancing, washing hands regularly and avoid touching your face.
Different varieties of masks are available in the stores and a regular mask is not effective to shield you from the COVID-19 disease when it is used alone.
Prevent Yourself From Infectious Diseases By Maintaining Hygiene. Choose From Out Wide-Range Of Handwashes And Sanitizers!
The Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends an N95 respirator face masks to shield on from contracting COVID-19. An N95 respirator face mask has the potential to remove tiny particles from the air that are inhaled through it. These respirators filter out about 95% of every minute 0.3-micron particles and also capable of filtering out harmful microbes, bacteria and viruses.
How Different Are N95 Respirators From N95 Face Masks
N95 respirators are structured to lessen the user’s exposure to airborne particles, ranging from small particle aerosols to large droplets. When effectively fitted and worn very minimal seepage happens around the edges of the respirator when the user breathes air. It means all of the air passes via the filter. While all other face masks are loose-fitting and only shield against droplets including respiratory particles.
When To Use A Mask
- Wear a mask if you are taking care of COVID19 infected person.
- Use a mask if you have fever, cough or sneeze.
- Masks are considered to be effective only when used in combination with regular hand washing.
How To Use, Take And Dispose Of A Mask
- Before wearing on a mask, clean hands with alcohol-based hand sanitizer or soap and water.
- Cover mouth and nose with mask and ensure there are no spaces between your face and mask.
- Avoid touching the mask while using it.
- Clean hands with hand sanitizer or soap and water if you have touched the mask.
- Change the mask with a new one, once it is wet and damp and never reuse single-use masks.
- Remember to take off the mask from behind and do not touch the front of the mask and dispose of it immediately. Wash hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand sanitizer immediately.
Are Homemade Masks Safe?
Health care workers treating COVID-19 patients should wear N95 masks to protect themselves from the SARS-CoV-2 virus, while caregivers and other medical experts not closely working with infected people can very well use surgical masks or even homemade masks.
Polypropylene is the ideal fabric material that can be used to make a mask at home.
Having said that homemade mask will not safeguard virus particles if used for longer periods or if a person spends a lot of time in close contact with an infected person, but it will shield you from the droplets containing the virus.
What Is A Hand Sanitizer?
Hand sanitizer is a liquid or gel that is applied on to the hands for clearing away common germs or disease-causing organisms and it is available in the form of foam, gel, or liquid. Alcohol-based sanitizers are mostly recommended in health care setup than the usage of soap and water. Hand sanitizers are efficient in killing the minute germs and other microorganisms and are tolerated well than soap and water. Also Read: DIY Hand Sanitizers: 3 Cool Ideas To Disinfect Your Hands
Different Types Of Hand Sanitizers
Hand sanitizers are generally categorized into two types based on the nature of active ingredients:
Alcohol-based sanitizers comprise 60-95% of alcohol, and the most common form of alcohol used includes ethanol, isopropanol, or n-propanol. These hand sanitizers have the potential to instantly curb proteins and counteract certain forms of microorganisms.
Alcohol-free products are formulations that contain disinfectants like benzalkonium chloride (BAC) or any anti-microbial agent. Both disinfectant and anti-microbial agent work alike, their action is prompt and persistent.
A few types of hand sanitizers contain emollients like glycerine that are like thickening agents which can soothe the skin and renders fragrance.
According to the World Health Organization (WHO) and Centres for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), alcohol-based hand sanitizers are the most recommended ones than others. Alcohol-based hand sanitizers if applied properly over the hand surface and fingers for 30 seconds and allowed to thoroughly air-dry have the potential to lessen an attack of bacteria, fungi and viruses.
Hand sanitizers are valued as the most effective hygienic essentials during this time of on-going COVID-19 pandemic to contain the transmission of infectious disease. At this juncture, hand sanitizers and masks are the must-have essentials that you need to stock right from your home, workplaces, hospitals and health care clinics.