BFHD public health expert breaks down mask types

There are a lot of options when it comes to masks, like cloth surgical, KN95’s, the list goes on.

Heather Hill, RN, BSN, is a public health expert with the Benton-Franklin Health District. She walks through each mask type, and what protections they give us.

“In general, the general public, the purpose for having a mask on is to stop you from spewing organisms that can get to other people,” said Hill.

Hill says that cloth masks can be stylish, but they recommend wearing a different mask underneath it. She says the more layers of fabric, the better.

When it comes to those disposable or surgical masks, make sure it is multiple-ply when reading the label.

“So you want to make sure that your disposable surgical type mask is multiple-ply,” said Hill.

So what’s the difference between a KN95 and an N95?

“Those KN or KS, those are really depicting a foreign-made product, usually China or Korea and they have not gone through the NIOSH certification like an N95 has,” said Hill.

N95 masks offer lots of protection, and according to Hill, they capture 95 percent of particles as small as 0.3 microns.

“We certainly encourage people to use the mask that’s appropriate for your current situation. N95 really is meant for that high-risk environment where you know in a medical environment that you are likely to be exposed to pathogens,” said Hill. “Outside of that we really encourage people to go KN95 the surgical masks with good layers of fabric or a surgical mask underneath your fabric mask,” said Hill.

Lastly, having a clean mask is always a good idea too, not to mention it’s better for your skin.

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Article Source: Fox 11