A surgical face mask, also known as a medical mask, is a disposable mask worn by healthcare professionals during medical procedures to prevent the spread of infection and protect both the wearer and patients from the transmission of respiratory droplets and other contaminants. These masks are typically made of multiple layers of material, including a non-woven outer layer, a melt-blown middle layer, and a non-woven inner layer.
Key features and purposes of surgical face masks include:
- Bacterial Filtration Efficiency (BFE): Surgical masks are designed to provide a high level of bacterial filtration efficiency, typically above 95%. This helps in preventing the passage of bacteria and other microorganisms.
- Fluid Resistance: Surgical masks are also designed to resist fluids, such as blood or other bodily fluids, which might be encountered during medical procedures.
- Loose Fit: Surgical masks are generally loose-fitting and don’t form a seal around the face. This design allows for comfortable breathing and helps prevent the wearer from touching their face.
- Single-Use: They are intended for single-use and should be discarded after use to prevent the spread of contaminants.
- Earloops or Ties: Surgical masks are often equipped with earloops or ties to secure the mask in place.
- Nose Wire: Some surgical masks have a built-in nose wire to improve the fit around the nose.
- Colors: They are typically blue or green, which are common colors for medical masks.