Why You Should Wear a Mask When Using Cleaning Chemicals

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Person holding cleaning supplies

The chemicals used for cleaning can help brighten work and home spaces, but they also carry dangers. Cleaning agents can exude harmful fumes, and prolonged contact with them can have serious health consequences.

Failure to follow instructions and specifications can cause illness. Mixing cleaning chemicals with other cleaning agents can kill you. Learn why you should wear a mask when using cleaning chemicals and what masks can and cannot do to protect you.

Viruses, Bacteria, and Particulates

It appears everyone turned into a mask expert during the COVID-19 pandemic. We learned that cloth masks and neck gaiters were ineffective for blocking the virus, while surgical masks were better. And people came to realize that N95, KN95, and KF94 masks were the best.

These types of masks offer protection against the transmission of respiratory disease, and can block some harmful particulates like dust and allergens. The do not, however, block dangerous chemical fumes.

The kind of mask you should wear when using cleaning chemicals depends on the chemicals in the cleaners. Read the labels, heed all warnings, and make sure you have the right kind of personal protective equipment (PPE).

Respirators for Dangerous Vapors and Chemicals

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health’s list of dangerous chemicals that require a higher level of protection is long and complex. If the cleaners that you use contain these substances, you must use a respirator with the proper filter to keep from inhaling these chemicals.

Splash Back

Even when wearing a mask, you may still be vulnerable to chemical burns or skin irritation if the materials you’re using come into contact with your skin or splash on your face. To protect yourself from contact with harsh chemical agents, you may need to add additional PPE supplies. These could include face visors, goggles, gloves, or even full hazardous material suits.

Wearing the right mask and other personal protective equipment when using cleaning chemicals is critical to protecting yourself from the harm that some of these chemicals can cause. Quality MRO stocks a variety of PPE that should answer many of your needs. Contact us with any questions you have and order today.

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