How To Wear A Face Mask Correctly : Its Use, Types, and Proper Wearing and Removal

how to wear a face mask

Masks should be used as part of a comprehensive strategy of measures to suppress transmission of infection and save lives. Though it somehow looks easy to use, some still cannot practice how to wear and remove them after each use. Let us learn about the importance of face masks, know how to wear a face mask, and become aware of its correct removal and disposal.


What is a face mask?

One instrument used to prevent the transmission of the disease is face masks. It has many names – dental, isolation, laser, medical, procedural, or surgical mask, and they all work for sanitation and prevention of contamination and spread of disease.

Face masks are loose-fitting coverings with ear loops, ties, or bands at the rear of the head that shield the nose and mouth. There are many different brands and colours to choose from. Face masks have been part of every healthcare personnel’s personal protective equipment (PPE) for a long time. However, this COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to different face coverings like cloth masks worn with or without the usual surgical masks. It is then critical to be reminded of the importance of utilising an FDA-approved face mask.

What is a face mask used for?

family wearing face masksFace masks serve to keep germs at bay. Small droplets might be released into the air when someone speaks, coughs, or sneezes, infecting others. When someone is unwell, a face mask can help minimise the number of germs they discharge and protect others from becoming ill. A face mask also shields the wearer’s nose and mouth from bodily fluid spills or sprays.

When should a face mask be worn?

Consider wearing a face mask when you are sick with a cough or sneezing illness (with or without fever), and you expect to be around other people. The face mask will help protect others from catching your infection.

Meanwhile, you should also wear face masks if you are to be exposed to places and community settings where illnesses are transmitted via airborne or droplets. Hospitals, enclosed public places, and other healthcare settings have specific rules for when people should wear face masks.

Wear Masks: Storage and Disposal of face masks

Disposable face masks should be used once and then thrown in the trash. You should also remove and replace masks when they become moist.

Always follow the advice of your healthcare provider. The product instructions should also indicate the use and storage of the mask and procedures for putting on and removing such protective products. If instructions for putting on and removing the mask are not available, follow the steps below.

How to put and properly wear face masks

How to wear a mask? Here is a simple step-by-step to ensure the correct use of your single-use masks or cloth masks.

  • Clean your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser before touching the mask.
  • Remove a mask from the box and make sure there are no obvious tears or holes on either side of the mask.
  • Determine which side of the mask is the top. The side of the mask with a stiff bendable edge is the top and is meant to mould to the shape of your nose.
  • Determine which side of the mask is the front. The coloured side of the cover is usually the front and should face away from you, while the white side touches your face.
  • Follow the instructions below for the type of mask you are to wear and remove a face mask
    • Face Mask with Earloops: Hold the mask by the ear loops. Place the loop around each ear.
    • Face Mask with Ties: Bring the mask to your nose level, place the ties over the crown of your head, and secure it with a bow.
    • Face Mask with Bands: Hold the mask in your hand with the nosepiece or top of the mask at your fingertips, allowing the headbands to hang freely below your hands. Bring the mask to your nose level and pull the top strap over your head, resting over the crown of your head. Pull the bottom strap over your head so that it rests at the nape of your neck.
  • Mould or pinch the stiff edge to the shape of your nose. If using a face mask with ties, take the bottom links, one in each hand, and secure them with a bow at the nape of your neck.
  • Pull the bottom of the mask over your mouth and chin. Make sure that your face mask covers both your nose and mouth snugly.

How to remove face masks

We should all make sure that a single-use mask should be disposed of correctly after each use. When you go out, carry a paper bag or zip-lock bag to keep fresh or spare masks clean. You can also have a separate container for when you take your face mask off when eating or drinking. This is how you properly remove your mask:

  • Clean your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser before touching the mask. Avoid touching the front of the mask. The front of the cover is contaminated. Only touch the ear loops/ties/band. Follow the instructions below for the type of mask you are using.
    • wearing face masksFace Mask with Earloops: Hold both ear loops and gently lift and remove the mask.
    • Face Mask with Bands: Lift the bottom strap over your head first, then pull the top strap over your head.
    • Face Mask with Ties: Untie the bottom bow first, then untie the top bow and pull the mask away from you as the ties are loosened.
  • Throw the mask in the trash. Clean your hands with soap and water or hand sanitiser. If you are using a cloth mask, wash it as soon as possible, or place it in a separate clothes bin specifically used for PPEs to not spread the virus or bacteria to other garments.

The protection you get from your face masks depends on other sanitary and protective methods that you do complementary to wearing masks, like proper handwashing, physical distancing, and vaccination.

Need to know a supplier of high-quality face masks? Look no further than Critical Dental! Let one of our friendly representatives advise you on the best options available. Please do not hesitate to contact us at (02) 8883 0674.


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