Design and introduction of surgical mask
A surgical mask, also known as a procedure mask, is intended to be worn by health professionals during surgery and during nursing to catch the bacteria shed in liquid droplets and aerosols from the wearer's mouth and nose.
They are not designed to protect the wearer from inhaling airborne bacteria or virus particles and are less effective than respirators, such as N95 or NIOSHmasks which provide better protection due to their material, shape and tight seal.
Surgical masks are popularly worn by the general public in East Asian countries to reduce the chance of spreading airborne diseases.
The design of the surgical masks depends on the mode; usually the masks are 3 ply/3 layers. This 3 ply material is made up from a melt-blown material placed between non-woven fabric. The melt-blown material acts as the filter that stops microbes from entering or exiting the mask. Most surgical masks feature pleats or folds. Commonly, 3 pleats are used allowing the user to expand the mask so it covers the area from the nose to the chin.
There are 3 different ways to secure the masks. The most popular is the ear loop, where a string like material is attached to the mask and placed behind the ears. The other is the tie-on and the head band. The tie-on straps consist of four non-woven straps that are tied behind the head. The head band is an elastic strap that is placed behind the head.