Surgical Masks Versus N95: Picking the Right Mask For the Task

Surgical Masks Versus N95: Picking the Right Mask For the Task

Are Armbrust Surgical Masks N95? No they aren’t. But that doesn’t mean they aren’t effective tools when it comes to protecting yourself from COVID-19.

N95 masks and surgical masks may not be the same, but they are very similar. The materials used to make them are the same and so is the way they filter out particulate matter like microscopic viruses and other airborne germs. The main difference between the two masks is the way they seal around your face. A surgical mask has areas on the side of the mouth and near the nose where air can leak out.

When should you wear an N95 Mask?

If you are in an enclosed area where there is lots of potential risk for infection, then it would be better to wear a N95 surgical mask. An example of this would be a nurse or doctor conducting COVID-19 tests. The N95 respirator mask eliminates the chance of air flowing in from any direction except from within the mask itself.

N95 masks undergo regular stress tests using rather awkward looking contraptions that test precisely how much air goes in and out of the mask, too. One overlooked flaw in N95 masks is that if you have a beard, mustache, or other facial hair, the mask will not be as effective.

If you consult the many studies that compare effectiveness of N95 masks to surgical masks, the data bears out surgical masks being nearly as effective as their clunkier counterparts.

Check out the video embedded above for a more detailed explanation.