How do they work, and do they offer extra protection?
As a result of the coronavirus pandemic, face masks are now a must-have item for people worldwide with many studies confirming they offer protection against the virus. As a result, reusable face coverings with special antiviral coatings are gaining in popularity – but as something relatively new for the majority of the UK population, knowing what to look for when it comes to a mask and what antiviral really means can be tricky. We’re here to help.
How do antiviral fabrics work?
Antiviral fabrics are fabrics that have bacteria-killing coating on their surface. While awareness of this has soared during the pandemic, it’s actually not a new discovery and has been in use since the 1990s.
The most common antibacterial fabrics are those coated in a layer of silver ions, which effectively protects against 99.9% of bacterial pathogens. Similarly, copper and titanium ions are also known to be effective and have been in use for a while.
The metal ions enter the pathogen and bind to sulphur and proteins inside the pathogens and bacteria, disrupting its DNA. This prevents it from replicating and proliferating, making it harder to cause infection. They also destroy the cell’s ability to respire and produce energy, meaning that eventually, the pathogen will be destroyed completely.
Do antiviral face masks offer extra protection?
There haven’t been enough rigrious scientific studies as yet to conclusively prove that antiviral coatings afford more protection than a standard, well-fitting mask of multiple layers. Where the added protection comes in is when you are not wearing your mask, as the coating can reduce the risk of cross-infection or secondary infection.
Face masks have the potential to carry a lot of bacteria and can be highly infectious, as they can be contaminated on the outside. This is why you should wash your hands before and after touching your mask, never touch the front of your mask, and never share a mask with others.
A mask created with an antiviral fabric will carry fewer contaminants and pathogens on its outer surface, meaning that your mask is safer to handle and less likely to cause infection.
Wearwell’s reusable antiviral facemasks offer this added protection against coronavirus. All masks can be washed up to 20 times while retaining their antibacterial coating and are made from pure cotton for added comfort. Order online at: https://shop.wearwell.co.uk/