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The Best (and Worst) Materials for Homemade COVID Masks

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Intuitively and scientifically, it is shown that wearing a mask can help reduce the spread of the new coronavirus, and this coronavirus

. However, according to new research led by the University of Arizona, not all masks are the same.

Amanda Wilson (Amanda Wilson) is a PhD candidate in Environmental Health Sciences in the Community, Environment and Policy Department of the Meyer and Enid Zuckerman School of Public Health. He is a new study published in the Journal of Nosocomial Infection. The lead author of the study evaluated the capabilities of multiple bacteria. Non-traditional mask materials can prevent people from being infected after 30 seconds and 20 minutes of exposure to highly polluted environments.

The researchers compared the protection between wearing a mask and 20 minutes and 30 seconds without exposure to the virus, and found that the risk of infection was reduced by 24-94% or 44-99% depending on the difference in mask wearing and exposure time. They found that as the exposure time increased, the degree of risk reduction decreased.

"N99 masks are more effective than N95 masks in filtering particles in the air. They are obviously one of the best choices to stop the virus, because they can reduce the average risk by 94-99% in 20 minutes and 30 seconds of exposure, but they are very It is difficult to do, and there are ethical considerations, such as leaving these to medical professionals." Wilson said.

According to research, the next best choice is N95 and surgical mask, and surprisingly, the vacuum cleaner filter can be inserted into the filter bag of the cloth mask. The vacuum filter reduced the risk of infection by 83% in a 30-second exposure and 58% in a 20-minute exposure. Among other non-traditional materials evaluated by the researchers, tea towels, cotton blend fabrics and antibacterial pillowcases are the next best protective materials.

They found that a scarf can reduce the risk of infection by 44% after 30 seconds, and by 24% after 20 minutes. An equally effective cotton T-shirt is only slightly better than not wearing a mask at all.

Wilson (Wilson) said: "We know that masks are effective, but we want to know how effective they are and compare the effects of different materials on health outcomes."

Wilson and her team collected data from various mask efficacy studies and created a computer model to simulate the risk of infection, taking into account multiple factors.

"A major factor in the risk is how long you will endure. We compared the risk of infection at 30 seconds and 20 minutes in a highly polluted environment," she said.

She said that other conditions that affect the risk of infection include the number of people around you and the distance from you.

Sneezing, coughing and even vocalization caused by the virus transmission droplet size is also a very important factor. Larger virus-carrying droplets, heavier droplets are smaller, and lighter droplets drop from the air faster. This is one of the reasons why distance helps reduce exposure.

Wilson said: "The size of the aerosol is also affected by humidity." "If the air is drier, the aerosol will become faster and smaller. If the humidity is higher, the aerosol will remain for a longer period of time. Larger, so it falls off more quickly. It sounds good at first, but then these aerosols fall on the surface and the object becomes another potential route of exposure."

Studies have also shown that the longer a person spends in an environment where the virus is present, the less effective the mask will be.

Wilson said: "This does not mean that you have to take off the mask after 20 minutes, but it does mean that the mask cannot reduce your risk to zero. Don't go to the bar for four hours, because wearing a mask and thinking that you are not risky Try to stay at home, wash your hands frequently, wear a mask when going out, and don’t touch your face."

Masks protect the wearer and others in many different ways. Wilson said that there are two "intuitive ways" to cover larger aerosols: mechanical interception and inertial impact.

"The denser the fiber of the material, the better the filtering effect. This is why a higher thread count leads to higher efficiency. She said: "There are more ways to stop this virus. "But some masks (such as masks made of silk) also have electrostatic properties, which can attract smaller particles and make them unable to pass through the mask. "

The model developed by Wilson and her colleagues includes parameters such as the rate of inhalation, the amount of air inhaled over time, and the concentration of viruses in the air.

Wilson said: “We collected a lot of research data, put it into a mathematical model, and correlated these data points.” “For example, if we know that people’s inhalation rates vary so much, and we know that there is so much in the air. The virus, and these materials provide such high efficiency in filtering, what does this mean for the risk of infection? Part of the reason we provide the range is that everyone is different, such as the amount of air we breathe over time. "

Wilson also said that it is important for the mask to have a good seal so that it can be clipped to the nose. She pointed out that when people are not using masks, they should not wear masks under their mouth and nose or tuck them under their chins.

"The correct use of masks is so important," Wilson said. "In addition, we also focus on protecting the wearer's masks, but if you are infected, they are the most important to protect the people around you. If you spread less virus into the air, it means that the environment around you is less polluted. Just as As our model shows, the amount of infectious virus you are exposed to has a great impact on your risk of infection, and you may also put masks on others to protect them."

Reference: "The use of COVID-19 and non-traditional masks: How to compare various materials to reduce the risk of infection for mask wearers?" Amanda M. Wilson, Sarah E. 2020 May of


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It is recommended to use a vacuum cleaner filter in the article to enhance the protection provided by the cloth mask, but can the coffee filter still provide the same level of protection?

Dumbocraps wants the pig ring to pass through the nose to keep the face diapers safe.

Such an eloquent, wise comment

You are the one sitting there and reading this article. ?

The vacuum filter is designed to trap dust particles and is denser than the coffee filter, which has many micropores that allow water to pass through.

When using vacuum bags or filters in a mask, use caution because they contain fiberglass. HEPA filters use thousands of glass fibers, which are very small and sticky to particles trying to pass through them. This tight fiber weave will then capture particles larger than 0.3 microns in size. Please do your research.

No, they didn't.

Therefore, this is a regurgitation of data since late May. I think this is an update of earlier research.

I sew the mask by hand in an eco-friendly bag, which has a small pocket with a cotton filter inside to provide more protection. I have provided 100 Pcs for free and are still increasing. Little help.

I have developed a mask that converts the energy of sunlight and various other light sources into 265nm UVC radiation emitted from the place where my patented lotion is placed. This makes my mask anti-viral. I also impregnated the fabric with nano-metal compounds that make it anti-viral. Finally, my mask is double-layered, and the first surface layer provides a liquid barrier. The second layer is cooling, which is also an antibacterial agent. Please check my website. I hope everyone knows how to wear a mask to save their own lives and the lives of others.

I have developed the cloak of invisibility.

Love your post! Important information for living in the new "normal"

With the new information provided by the World Health Organization, it shows that the COVID-19 virus can spread under certain conditions, so always wearing a mask is essential for personal safety and the safety of others.

During this period, cotton masks are the most comfortable choice. They are skin-friendly, reusable, and comfortable to wear for a long time.

Vacuum filters should not be used based on the risk of glass fibers being sucked into the lungs and causing serious problems. HEPA manufacturers and distributors have explicitly banned its use in face masks because the filter is not suitable for this type of use.

In fact, some vacuum bag manufacturers have been trying to reassure people that no, their vacuum bags do not contain glass fiber. Don't believe everything you read on Facebook.

How about a liver vacuum bag that can capture a maximum of 0.1 micron?

I hope you do not suggest that we use Hepa filters.

No glass fiber is used in the HEPA filter of 3M's air purifier. I cut it open, got about 3 yards of material and pleated it. I don't know anything about vacuum filters or other brands, and 3M does not recommend using their air filters for masks. They have made a disclaimer, but how many drugs do we use? You do your research... I did my job, and I decided to put a pocket for the HEPA air filter mask, which makes me feel safer. It is recommended to use 100% stitched cotton.

My purpose of reading this article is to get some suggestions, accompanied by scientific knowledge, for the materials used in making masks. The title seemed to promise this, but it didn't fulfill it.

If you get sick asymptomatic, otherwise the mask with valve will release unfiltered air into the environment, otherwise your exhaled air will be contaminated and unfiltered, putting everyone at risk. Please avoid using belts. People with valves and masks should even use them!

If you become sick asymptomatic, otherwise the mask with valve will release unfiltered air into the environment, otherwise your exhaled air will be contaminated and unfiltered, putting everyone at risk. Avoid using Valves of people and masks, even these valves will be unavailable!

very good

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