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The difference between medical, non-medical and surgical masks explained

The difference between medical, non-medical and surgical masks explained

The difference between a medical, non-medical and surgical mask explained, and whether it is hygienic to reuse a mask.

Since the pandemic and lockdown, it has been recommended by the government to wear a non-medical mouth cap. Only when we search the internet for a mouth cap are there so many different types. What is the difference between a medical and non-medical face mask? And which one is best to protect yourself? And is it hygienic to reuse the mouth cap? These questions are all addressed in this blog post.

Medical, non-medical, and surgical mouth caps

Surgical mouth masks include Type IIR mouth masks. Type IIR face masks have a BFE (bacterial filtration efficiency) of 98%. The purpose of a surgical mouth mask is to filter the air you exhale. Surgical masks are often worn while treating patients in hospitals. A type IIR mask is less effective than an FFP2 or FFP3 mask, because it fits less tightly to the face. However, the Type IIR mouth caps from Eexi.nl are splash and liquid resistant, unlike other suppliers. A non-medical mouth cap has no CE markings, a medical claim on the packaging and does not have to comply with the European standard. In contrast to a medical mask, which does have all the necessary CE markings, and is tested according to the European standard.

Which face mask is the best to wear?

It is recommended to wear a non-medical face mask in the Netherlands. These mouth caps are unapproved and do not meet the European standard. The coronavirus has shown us that it is not going to leave for the time being, so optimal protection is a must. A mouth mask that meets the European standard with CE markings still provides a guarantee for protection. At Eexi.nl we offer medical Type IIR face masks, which can also be used for non-medical purposes.

Can I reuse the mask?

The masks are 'NR', which means that the mask is Not Reusable (not reusable). Masks are protective products that become less protective over time. A Type IIR mask is effective for an average of 8 hours. Even if the mask is worn in low-risk areas, while also keeping a safe distance, the mask is still effective for 8 hours. This is because the mask gradually becomes moist through breathing. The filtration capacity and physical integrity of the mask is then reduced due to the humidity. An article was recently published in which people strongly advise against reusing a mouth cap. The mask cannot be disinfected, so the bacteria remain in the mask.

How do I put on a face mask?

  1. Wash your hands with soap, or disinfect your hands with disinfectant gel.
  2. Grab the mask by the elastics and place them around the ears.
  3. Make sure the mask is over your nose and mouth, then press the nose clip for an optimal fit.
  4. Wear the mask continuously for up to 8 hours or replace the mask sooner if it is wet from breathing.
  5. Dispose of the mask with the residual waste and do not touch the mask unnecessarily.
  6. Wash your hands with soap, or disinfect your hands with disinfectant gel.

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