Respiratory protection is essential in certain work-related conditions. Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, the general public has become familiar with respiratory protection. Terms such as N95 that used to be familiar only to safety officers and first responders are now normal to most of us. N95 stands for guaranteed 95% protection against particles measuring 0.3 microns in size. However, respiratory protection devices classified as N95 are further classified into several categories which satisfy specific requirements. Aside from respiratory protection devices that provide N95 protection, several additional products can provide some degree of respiratory protection, depending on particular conditions and needs. Here are the classes of excellent respiratory protection products available on our website:

N95 Surgical Masks

A surgical mask is a loose-fitting, disposable device that creates a physical barrier between the nose and mouth of the wearer and contaminants in the environment near the wearer. 21 CFR 878.4040 regulates face masks. Though surgical masks are sometimes referred to as face masks, not all face masks are regulated as surgical masks.

The most common applications of surgical masks are in healthcare and hospice care settings, such as surgery, nurse/hospice care, and most hospital work. Surgical masks are also used by police, rescue, and firefighting teams.

One type of surgical mask that fits this requirement includes the 1500 N95 Series Healthcare Particulate Respirators and Surgical Masks manufactured by Moldex. These surgical masks meet CDC guidelines for protection against TB exposure and surgical smoke and laser plumes. These also have the highest ASTM level for fluid resistance of 160 mm Hg.

Kimberly-Clark Professional FLUIDSHIELD* PFR95* N95 Particulate Filter Respirators & Surgical Masks also provide a high level of fluid protection (ASTM Level 3) and have features that make them ideal for use in healthcare environments, as well as for police, firefighting, and waste disposal settings. Their large breathing chamber provides added comfort when breathing.

Particulate Respirators

Particulate respirators are also known as air-purifying respirators. They protect you against suspended particles. However, since airborne biological agents, such as viruses and bacteria, are particles, these respirators can filter them well.

An excellent example of a particulate respirator is the 2200 N95 Series Particulate Respirator. Its patented Dura-Mesh shell can filter particles measuring 0.30 microns at 95% efficiency in hot or humid environments. These works best to protect wearers during welding, soldering, sanding, metalworking, and grinding. 

Another alternative is the 3M™ Aura™ Particulate Respirator 9205PH-10-DCCA which also does a great job of accomplishing this role as a welding respiratory protection device as well as for woodworking and soldering.

The Honeywell DF300 N95 Flatfold Disposable Respirator can also protect workers in adverse environments, such as asbestos removal, woodworking, metalworking, and sandblasting, with exceptional comfort.

For an added layer of protection against non-oil-based gases workers would typically encounter during welding, arc cutting, brazing, plasma spraying, laboratory settings, rendering plants, mining operations, waste disposals, and other settings, the 2400 Series N95 Particulate Respirators, with an added carbon layer to filter out nuisance levels of organic and ozone vapors, is an excellent choice.

Reusable Face Masks

Though not certified as respirators, these reusable facemasks provide adequate protection against suspended airborne particles, including most bacteria and viruses, when using public transportation, in an office or at home, or when running errands. Made with multiple layers of finely woven cotton fabric, these allow optimal breathability and comfort. However, these reusable facemasks are not intended for medical use. People with respiratory conditions such as asthma or heart conditions must consult a health care professional before using these types of face masks.

The 3M™ Daily Face Mask Reusable RFM100 is your best option for these types of applications. These masks are engineered to rest snuggly against the nose and face. These are washable and ideal for everyday use.

Disposable Daily Face Masks

Disposable daily face masks are perhaps the most familiar respiratory protection devices to the general public. Though these face masks are affordable, they have multiple layers of protection to protect people from airborne suspended particulates encountered in their daily routines, such as when using public transport, running errands, grocery shopping, or in office and home environments. These are not recommended for medical use. However, these face masks also do their share by protecting other people from suspended particles that may originate from the wearer.

The best examples of disposable daily face masks are on the TBS Business Solution website. The affordable Disposable 3Ply Earloop Face Mask and Mead Non-Medical Disposable Face Masks, available in boxes of 50, are made of Polypropylene with elastic earloops to help them fit snuggly on most wearers.

Disposable Medical Face Masks

Disposable medical face masks resemble daily disposable face masks in appearance. However, these have four layers of protection and have a bacterial filtration efficiency of at least 95%. These are designed to block the exhaled contaminants from the nose or mouth, making them usable in general medical settings. However, these are not substitutes for surgical masks.

Dual-Layer Face Cover with Replaceable Filters

An innovative approach to respiratory protection during everyday use, the dual-layer face cover combines the filtration efficiencies of its knitted filter block and replaceable filter, which reaches >98% of 0.30 micron-sized particles. Though these are not intended for medical use, their optimal filtration efficiency makes them ideal for protecting against suspended particulates in everyday situations and preventing contaminants and particles from being exhaled by the wearer.

The Honeywell Dual-Layer Face Cover With Replaceable Filters is an excellent example of this approach. With a seamless three-dimensional knit construction, these dual-layer face covers provide 4-way stretch-minimizing gaps when fitted, enhancing the wearers’ overall comfort while holding its filter block.

Conclusion: You Can Count On TBS Business Solutions to Provide Excellent Respiratory Protection for Most Working Conditions and Everyday Use

Respiratory protection is essential for protecting workers from the harmful effects of gases and suspended particulates. Workers, such as woodworkers, metalworkers, welders, medical professionals, and emergency workers, need adequate respiratory protection. These surgical masks, medical masks, particulate respirators, and other respiratory protection products can excellent job in the specific conditions they are designed for. Not only do these respiratory products help make certain tasks safer, but certain respiratory protection products are also helpful in keeping wearers and the people around them safer against the spread of respiratory diseases and from inhaling harmful levels of harmful gases encountered in their daily routines. To learn more about respiratory protection products, call us at (888) 542-9888 or visit our safety supplies page for item prices. TBS Business Solutions also offers office supplies, industrial and electrical hardware, janitorial, and construction supplies from the most reputed brands on their site.