Choosing The Right Face Mask
A surgical face mask, also called a sterile medical face mask, is designed to be worn by medical staff during medical care procedures. Surgical masks are designed to keep patients and other handling personnel from being infected by diseases that can spread through the air during surgical procedures. Face masks also provide comfort for the patient and reduce risks of infection and allergic reaction to equipment and medications. In general, face masks can prevent the transmission of airborne pathogens that could cause infections, although there is no evidence to prove this directly. However, the possibility remains that they could contribute to overall contamination of the operating room or surgical area.
The term “face mask” refers to any unit that provides protection for the nose, mouth and eyes of the patient and prevents exposure to airborne pathogens. These units are often used in conjunction with another type of covering, called a surgical covering. These include, gloves, eye shields, surgical jackets, and masks. Gloves are often used during surgeries to protect the hands from contamination and infection.
Surgical face masks are used in a variety of medical applications including pediatric procedures and adult-to-adult surgery. These coverings are generally made of vinyl and foam. Vinyl is the most flexible, lightweight, and affordable material, while foam offers the most protection and durability. Face masks of these materials typically feature an airtight sealing mechanism to ensure that the covering stays in place and does not slide down the face.
There are two types of face mask available, disposable or permanent. Disposable masks, which are disposed of after each use, are used in dental procedures, while permanent face masks are used on a daily basis. For dental procedures, disposable plastic face masks are used as an alternative to traditional cloth masks. This is because plastic coversings can be removed and replaced easily and quickly. The new cloth mask will fit comfortably over the original and be ready for use the next time the person has the procedure.
One of the most important factors in selecting a face coverings product is determining the level of moisture it can hold. While some materials will hold water better than others, all must be able to resist rapid evaporation. While moisture content is usually indicated on the packaging, if a product’s moisture absorption level needs to be further evaluated, it may be helpful to consult the manufacturer or an experienced medical professional.
Some face masks include exhalation valves to help maintain a consistent air flow through the nose and mouth. If one has a tendency to produce dry mucus when breathing, this type of valve would be beneficial. Breathing masks that include exhalation valves can improve air quality and help keep one comfortable during long procedures such as dental surgery. They can also serve as an additional way to decrease irritation associated with traditional nose splints. If one finds that these benefits are important to him or her, then these types of masks may be a good choice.