COVID: How to detect FAKE N95 and KN95 masks and the best way to store them

Experts have said it: cloth masks do not offer enough protection against the Omicron variant, so it is crucial to use another type of mask to avoid contagion with this version of COVID that has taken over the world scene. However, it is also essential detect fake N95 and KN95 masks on the market, and store them in the best possible way to get the most out of them.

These are some keys to help you discover Counterfeits that do not meet the quality standards necessary to protect against Omicron and some recommendations for storing and reusing your N95 or KN95 masks.

Tips to detect fake masks

It is a fact that with Ómicron’s high level of contagiousness, the fit and material of the masks is essential to maximize protection. In addition to the fact that they must fit perfectly to the face, must filter at least 95% of air particles.

According to the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), about 60% of KN95 masks made outside the United States are fake and they do not meet the requirements of the National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH).

How to make sure a KN95 or N95 mask is not fake? Here are some keys shared by the CDC:

Prefer those that are NIOSH certified, that is, those made in the United States. NIOSH only certifies N95, N99, N100, R95, R99, R100, P95, P99, and P100 respirators.

– If not possible, then make sure international manufacturers are certified by an ISO / IEC 17025 accredited laboratory.

– The decorative elements in these masks are a characteristic of counterfeits.

Price is another factor. According to the CDC, the price for each mask should be between two and three dollars. Paying less for each mask can be suspicious.

– NIOSH does not approve any type of respiratory protection for children.

– CDC offers a list of NIOSH certified equipment as well as a list of ISO / IEC 17025 accredited testing laboratories known in China.

How to store the masks?

Although the CDC recommends not wearing an N95 or KN95 mask more than five times, it is possible to use longer and keep them clean. The doctor Joseph Gastaldo, an infectious disease specialist, told USA Today that masks can be rotated as long as they are touched with clean hands and stored well. So you can have three or five numbered skins and rotate their use.

Storing them outdoors or sanitizing them with heat is one way to prolong their use. According to the CDC, N95 masks can be heated to a maximum of 158 degrees Fahrenheit for 60 minutes in an oven or steamed. They can be stored in brown paper bags or outdoors.

Read more:

+ COVID: The symptoms of Omicron that you may not have noticed

+ One Inch Less: The Surprising Effect of COVID on a Man’s Genitalia

+ COVID: Omicron comes from mice, according to Chinese scientists

+ The 20 safest airlines to travel in the pandemic in the world 2022

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