Which Mask Should I Wear?

We live in a very different world from just 3 years ago due to the Covid pandemic. Mask use is controversial. There are different choices out there, which should you wear?  The best type of mask is something called an N95. It has two straps that go behind you head.  It can filter particles as small as the virus that causes Covid infection. It also has an electrostatic charge that can capture virus. You either exhale throught the device or there is a valve that opens when you breath out. The type with the open valves do not protect the people around you. Another good choice is the KN95. This type of mask has elastic bands that go behind the ears. It too can filter virus particles due to the small pores in the mask and the electrostatic charge.  

Surgical masks do not have the ability to continually filter particles the size of the  virus. Initially they may offer some protection due to the electrostatic charge but do not fit as well on the face. 

Single layer cloth masks do not have the ability to filter particles the size of virus, and offer very little protection.

How you handle the mask is very important. Treat it like it is poison. Do not bring it down under your chin. It you touch it, wash your hands or use an alcohol based hand sanitzer. Do not place it down on your desk or table. If it is working, it will be contaminated with virus.

Author
Gary B. Nackman, MD, FACS Gary Nackman, MD, FACS, is a board-certified vascular surgeon with more than 30 years of experience helping women and men with venous disease and cosmetic concerns achieve healthy veins and skin. He founded the NJ Vein Care and Aesthetics Center in Clifton, New Jersey, to provide high-quality, one-on-one, patient-centered care in a welcoming, supportive environment. He's proud to be listed in the Consumers Research Council of America's "Guide to America's Top Surgeons."

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