Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, various recommendations, including the use of face masks, have been issued by the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). While there is agreement from the CDC, American Lung Association, and the World Health Organization that masks are helpful in preventing the spread of COVID-19, the type of masks are the key factor in effectively reducing the risks.
It is important to remember that face masks used by the general public, including cloth masks and surgical masks, are recommended to prevent the infection of others, not to prevent the infection of the wearer. With more consistent use of quality masks, and specifically the 3-ply, 99% bacterial filtration efficiency masks we offer at Paragon Global Supply, you can protect yourself and reduce the spread of COVID-19 through airborne droplets with other individuals.
The challenge with COVID-19 is the number of infected or positive individuals with no symptoms or only mild symptoms. These mild symptoms can be mistaken for colds, allergies, or other types of mild respiratory issues. The number of asymptomatic people may be as high as one in four adults, according to reports by the American Lung Association and the CDC. There are also individuals in the population that are pre-symptomatic, or that have COVID-19 but have yet to show the symptoms.
When these asymptomatic people cough or sneeze, the COVID-19 virus is expelled from the body in tiny water droplets known as aerosols. In a recent study available online from Emerging Infectious Diseases Journal, the droplets traveled a distance greater than 2 meters, and in some tests, as far as 8 meters.
Any type of barrier, including a cloth mask, can help to reduce the horizontal distance the droplets can travel from the individual. However, as Lisa Brosseau, ScD., and a retired professor at the University of Illinois at Chicago reports, the do-it-yourself (DIY) cloth mask only stops the largest particles. This creates a false sense of protection for those choosing to use this face covering option.
The Problems With Cloth Masks
In addition to the lack of fine filtration to block particles of 0.3 microns, which is a concern with COVID-19, cloth masks also are not designed to fit around the face. Loose fit around the nose and the sides of the face provides an area where aerosol particles can escape from the mask. While they may help to prevent the distance the droplets travel, they are not at all effective in safeguarding those around the wearer. The commonly used bandana style of masks are completely open on the sides and the bottoms, providing extremely limited filtering.
Schematic showing filtration of aerosol particles using a combination of mechanical and electrostatic filtration from a combination of fabrics.[/caption]
Other concerns with do-it-yourself cloth masks are the options in fabrics. Fabrics with a loose weave have a high porosity, allowing small and large particles to pass through. Doubling or tripling the layers of a do-it-yourself cloth mask improves the efficiency, but the issues with the open sides and around the chin and nose continue to be a major risk.
A Better Option
Choosing a 3-ply mask with a bacterial filtration efficiency of 99% for airborne particles at 0.3 microns offers the best protection for the people around you. Paragon Global Supply offers these single-use, disposable masks that use three layers of protection, including an outer barrier layer, a high-density filter inner layer, and an absorbent, non-woven inner layer.
The filters are pleated to make them comfortable to wear all day. Unlike do-it-yourself cloth masks, they have an internal wire on the top of the mask, allowing the user to shape it to fit against the nose and across the cheeks. The length of the mask provides for coverage from the bridge of the nose to the chin, and ear loops make the mask easy to put on and remove as needed.
The choice of the 3-ply masks we offer is a cost-effective option compared to a do-it-yourself cloth mask. As they are disposable, there is no need to worry about cleaning the mask or constantly buying new fabric, just throw it away and use a clean mask the next time one is needed.
To get your own 3-ply mask today visit our online store at https://shop.paragonglobalsupply.com/
Be Safe, Feel Comfortable, Breathe Freely.
3-Ply Disposable Face Masks (50-pack)
Starting at $12.99