FAQs and Covid and Masks

Why do we wear masks?

  • Covid-19 is transmitted by virus-containing droplets generated when you are breathing, speaking, singing, shouting, coughing, and sneezing.
  • Covid-19 can linger and remain viable in the air as small droplets. Surgical masks and N-95 respirators both cut down the distance Covid-19 contaminated aerosols can travel. Other face-covering options such as cloth masks are less effective at reducing the distance that aerosols can travel.
  • By wearing masks, individuals can reduce their risk of 1) being exposed to Covid viruses and 2) transmitting that virus to other people.
  • Remember, even if you are not personally at risk for severe consequences from a Covid infection, many people around you may be due to specific medical conditions or may be close to someone who has those medical conditions.

What kind of face mask is best for protecting myself and others?

  • Both N-95 respirators and surgical masks are more effective at controlling particle movement than single-use masks and cloth or homemade masks. These masks provide approximately twice as much protection as the other options.
  • However, both KN95 and N95 masks require more effort to breathe than surgical masks. Our experience is that wearing these masks will tire you out more quickly.
  • For this reason, if you notice that wearing these masks cause breathing problems, we recommend that you switch to a 3 ply surgical mask.

What is the difference between KN-95 or N-95 masks?

  • The 95 in N-95, means they are capable of filtering out up to¬†95% of airborne particles. KN-95 are made for the Asian market and are often more suitable for smaller faces. N-95 are more suitable to be worn by larger faces.
  • Both styles can provide a close facial fit and are very efficient at filtering out airborne particles.

Further Information about Masks

Further technical questions about masks at Keene State can be addressed to Ralph Stuart at ralph.stuart@keene.edu You can request masks from Keene State using this form.