Deciding which kind of mask to wear during Covid is daunting. Depending on your values and interest in the common good, different masks will be more appropriate than others. Research shows that the N95 respirator is the most effective mask for self-protection. 

The N95 mask can block out 95% of particles in the air, effectively slowing the spread. Although this mask has the potential to keep everyone safe, supplies are limited. Given the lack of supply, health officials ask the public to save these masks for medical workers and patients. Those who need the most protection should have first dibs, right? Answering this is tricky, as one needs to take care of oneself first. Prioritizing the greater good is a utilitarian concept that may not fit many people's values. Here we discuss why you may or may not want to wear an N95 mask. Click here to learn more about types of masks you should consider buying.

Best Protection Offered 

In terms of actual protection, N95 masks are the best option for filtering out particles and droplets in the air. The n95 masks also offer a very snug fit, further reducing particles from entering masks. Many alternatives loosen over time, increasing the chances of particles or droplets to spread. As a result of limited supply, essential workers have had to rely on less effective masks. These are KN95 masks, and they are imported from China. Not all of these masks are certified with the same standards as N95 masks, making them a less than an ideal substitute. Nevertheless, these masks are used in crises when N95 masks aren't available. 

Alternatives and n95 mask for sale 

To preserve for those most in need, the public is urged to wear fabric masks and disposable non-medical grade masks. Health officials feel that these options are substantial alternatives as, generally, individuals are not exposed to high-risk environments regularly. The one exception pertains to construction workers and other builders exposed to hazardous chemicals and debris. These workers are familiar with heavy-duty face masks and continue to use them as the virus goes on. To find an n95 mask for sale, seek out manufacturers who document certification online. You should also be using direct retailers rather than mass retail sites. Mass retail sites contain many counterfeit masks and low-quality items that do not offer the same protection as the real deal. 

The Main Things to Remember 

Since most people are not exposed to high-risk environments, KN95 masks or other alternatives to N95 masks offer more than enough for protection. For these reasons, no, you do not need to wear an N95 mask to stay safe. Some people want to ensure that they are doing all they can for their safety and their family's safety and refuse to abstain from wearing N95 masks. Even though they are reserved for essential workers and sick patients only, from a values-based context, it could be argued that n95 masks are necessary to wear during COVID-19. From a practical perspective, however, alternatives should be sufficient enough.