Difference between N95 and PM2.5 Mask
N95 is a rated mask that can filter out 95% of dust and particulates in the air. While PM 2.5 is the fine particulate matter itself that is the air pollutant that people are concerned about.
PM2.5 are tiny particles in the air that reduce visibility and cause the air to appear hazy when levels are elevated. PM 2.5 tends to stay suspended in the air longer thus can lead to plaque deposits in your nose, throat, lungs or even the arteries and can even lead to a heart attack.
So when people say it’s a PM 2.5 mask it means that this mask can filter out these tiny particles in the air. It can be an N95 or N99 mask that can block these PM 2.5 particles.
The number in this mask refers to the percentage of polluted PM2.5 that the mask can filter out.
The N95 mask filters out 95% of dust and particulates. The N99 masks will filter out slightly more at 4% more polluted particles but the N95 mask offers 50% lesser breathing resistance than N99.
What is PM 2.5 made of?
PM 2.5 pertains to dust, spores, and pollen in the air. PM2. 5 refers to particles that have a diameter less than 2.5 micrometres which is more than 100 times thinner than a human hair and remain suspended and floating longer in the air. These particles are formed as a result of burning fuel and chemical reactions that take place in the atmosphere
Can an N95 mask really prevent PM 2.5?
The N95 and N99 masks both could block 95% and 99% of PM2.5 particulate matter of 2.5 micrometres or less in diameter. PM2.5 particles are a complex combination of pollutants as dust, pollen, smoke, and mist. These particles are said to be dangerous as well.
Why is PM 2.5 harmful?
PM 2.5 is harmful since these particulate matters are so small, light and very fine particles. They have the ability to stay longer in the air as compared to the heavier particles.
They become dangerous when these particles that are smaller than 2.5 micrometres will be able to make their way to the nose, throat and penetrate deeply into the lungs and the worst scenario if some might be able to enter the circulatory system.
Other reasons why PM2.5 is dangerous because it has multiple short terms and long term health impacts. The short term might include irritation in the eyes, nose and throat, coughing, sneezing and shortness of breath.
Prolonged exposure to PM2.5 can cause permanent respiratory problems such as asthma, chronic bronchitis and heart disease.
While PM2.5 impacts everyone, people with breathing and heart problems, it’s the children and the elderly that are most sensitive to it.
The continuous exposure to particulate matter can be put your health in the line for it’s said to be lethal than alcohol and diabetes.
Always protect yourself in situations that can expose you to the ills of PM 2.5. Wear a mask and be safe.
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