Coronavirus

How to reuse and disinfect your N95 mask to stop Covid-19 from spreading

Stanford researchers offer 3 ways to kill coronavirus on N95 masks which is helping hospitals and first responders stretch the limited supplies.

How to reuse and disinfect your N95 mask to stop Covid-19 from spreading

Coronavirus cases in the United States are increasing and as of April 14 there are a total of 610,688 confirmed cases - 46,415 people have recovered and 125,678 have died. As the pandemic spreads and the fear of becoming infected grows people need to stretch limited resources, such as the masks they use in public places.

Researchers at Stanford University are helping hospitals, front line health workers and people in general across the country to decontaminate the gear they rely on for protection against Covid-19.

Experts recommend the next three methods: First the use of heat and humidity, this means that people can heat up their masks in a 170-degree oven for at least 30 minutes. That temperature won’t burn the paper or fabric but it will sanitize it.

The second method is putting the mask under hydrogen peroxide vapor, this has proven to kill viruses and is highly resistant to bacterial spores on N95 masks. The process uses specialized equipment to aerosolize hydrogen peroxide, which permeates the layers of the mask without degrading the mask material. Also you can use hydrogen peroxide to clean your mask.

The third method would be using a commercial disinfectant to wipe things down:  People can use 70% isopropyl alcohol, which is rubbing alcohol or a mixture of four teaspoons of bleach in a quart of water.

How to disinfect a cloth mask?

Even though experts do not recommend using a cloth mask they know there is a shortage of supplies and they recommend after coming back home it should be taken off and washed with hot water and soap.

Also, experts recommend using rubbing alcohol to disinfect the cloth mask after each use.

Experts strongly advise people do not use cloth masks on children under 2-years-old because they can asphyxiate.