This is a respirator that does not prevent COVID-19, which can even spread the disease more strongly. A series of health agencies have advised people not to use respirators with breathing valves, and airlines even forbid passengers to wear them.
Masks are currently one of the most sought-after items in the COVID-19 pandemic. You can also find many different types of masks on the market at different points of sale from pharmacies, supermarkets to health care stores.
But it is true that not all masks are equally effective against COVID-19.
While fabric masks and medical masks have both been shown to be effective when worn during a pandemic, there is one mask that experts and health authorities recommend against. Those are masks with breathing valves.
Not only did this mask fail to prevent COVID-19 transmission, but the mask could even spread the virus further if the person wearing it became infected. Respirators with breathing valves have therefore been banned from use by most US airlines. They will refuse to serve passengers wearing these masks.
“The purpose of wearing a mask is to prevent airway droplets from the wearer from reaching others. However, masks with a check valve or vents allow air to be exhaled. through a hole in it. This can cause respiratory droplets to be ejected and reach those around them, “said the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
“This type of respirator does not prevent the wearer from passing COVID-19 to others. Therefore, the CDC does not recommend the use of a respirator with a breathing valve or vents in source control.”
Mask with breathing valve: Prevent dust but not prevent fluid
Respirators with breathing valves are often sold in labor protection stores, because they are reserved for industries that are exposed to a lot of dust such as construction, building assembly, home repair, roads …
3M is a famous manufacturer of respirators, including N95 respirators equipped with breathing valves. They describe how these masks work as follows: Clean air is inhaled through the filter. But the air exhaled with the moisture will pass through the check valve.
This valve is essentially a thin rubber sheet that is half fixed, half exposed. When you inhale, the air pressure from the outside of the valve pushes it tightly against the plastic cap. The inhaled air will be filtered through the mask fabric. While exhaling, the higher pressure in the mask pushes the rubber foil open, and the steam carrying air is now pushed out through the breathing valve.
The valve masks are therefore very suitable for dust protection, when you are working on the job or on the road. It also limits the amount of steam blurring your glasses. Unfortunately, this type of mask does not prevent translation, and may even cause the virus to spread more strongly.
Rhonda Low, a family doctor who lives in Vancouver, Canada, explains: “Suppose you are an infected person and wear a respirator mask like this. When you exhale the valve hole, your breath “It is being compressed through a smaller aperture. That means the droplets will be spread faster and can go further.”
A recent study in the journal Science Advances examined N95 respirators with and without breathing valves and concluded that the type with a breathing valve decreased the effectiveness of the N95 mask.
“The filtration performance of the N95 mask is affected by the exhalation valve, which when opened allows strong airflow to blow out,” the authors wrote. “Although this valve does not affect the ability to protect the person wearing the mask, it may impair their ability to protect those around them.”
Meanwhile, health experts have emphasized many times that wearing a mask during a pandemic is meant to protect those around you rather than yourself. Wearing a mask can help you prevent drops from nearby people, avoiding touching your hands on your face.
It has a preventive effect on yourself to this extent. But the main effect of the mask is still to prevent your own droplets from spreading into the environment, carrying the SARS-CoV-2 virus in case you have got sick.
A respirator with a breathing valve causes droplets to be released faster and can travel further.
According to the WHO and CDC health recommendations, droplets shot by sneezing, coughing or even exhaled from a COVID-19 infected person are the main driver of the spread of the pandemic. And sick people can spread the virus even if they don’t have symptoms and feel well.
A series of health agencies have advised people not to use respirators with breathing valves, and airlines even forbid passengers to wear them.
With that said, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently updated its COVID-19 pandemic masking recommendation. They emphasized that masks with breathing valves were not effective in preventing disease and advised Americans not to wear them.
People who are looking for an N95 respirator because they think it is both safer and easier to breathe should turn to a fabric cloth mask, CDC said. A fabric mask can prevent most airway droplets from escaping.
Health Canada also says respirator masks do not help prevent the spread of COVID-19. “Some respirators and respirators with breathing valves are marketed to make wearer more comfortable, but it also allows respiratory droplets that carry pathogens out of the mask,” they wrote. .
Some people choose to use an N95 respirator or respirator because they think it is safer for themselves. But the Toronto Department of Public Health says “these valve masks can only filter dust, they cannot filter viruses”.
Several cities in Canada have now imposed a mandatory order to wear masks when leaving the house, and they also emphasized that masks with breathing valves are not accepted.
Many airlines in the US including Alaska Airlines, United, Delta, JetBlue, and most recently American Airlines have even refused to serve passengers wearing respirators – according to information from Dony Mask – manufacturer & processor of quality COVID face masks from Vietnam.
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Henry Pham (Pham Quang Anh), CEO of DONY Garment
This year, we have found that many international buyers are seeking new suppliers based in nations outside of China and Thailand to purchase many goods and products, including uniforms, workwear, reusable cloth face mask, and protective clothing.
At DONY Garment, we are proud to welcome international customers, especially those based in the US, Canada, the Middle East, and the EU market to discover the professional production line at our factory in Vietnam.
We guarantee our products are of the highest quality, at an affordable cost, and easy to transport across the world.