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Face shields-Proper selection, usage and cleaning for an effective infection control

Face shields-Proper selection, usage and cleaning for an effective infection control

The medical-grade personal protective equipment includes different protective gears consisting of gloves, goggles, face masks, and face shields. We have already been familiar with the other essential protection equipment such as the face masks and the gloves in our previous blogs. The face shields mentioned above also protect the wearer's entire face from any fluid splashes and harmful particulates and so becomes vital when we specifically address medical PPE.  

Extensive information about face shields- An Equipment for your health and safety

Extensive information about face shields- An Equipment for your health and safety

Face shields are an evergreen source of protection for the frontline workers as it covers the entire face and neck from flying objects, chemical splashes, viral contamination, and other harms. These protective essentials come in different forms, such as disposable or reusable, but all provide a transparent plastic barrier covering the face.

Now being considered a staple for medical personnel, face shields have shown widespread usage in healthcare settings for a while now. These are the transparent screens used in the combination of a variety of face masks. They come in different shapes, sizes, properties, and materials suited for a variety of usages.

Classified as personal protective equipment, as already stated above, the face shields find many potential uses in the medical, laboratory, and industrial environments. The workers involved in these sectors are highly vulnerable to chemical, respiratory, and impact risks. So the appropriate selection and usage of this form of personal safety gear become crucial. Let's now find some guidelines that are stated for a better choice of a face shield.

Guidelines for selecting a face shield for a comprehensive infection control

1) The material selection for a visor lens is a crucial factor since the material chosen for it should be:

  • Highly durable (such as polycarbonate, propionate, acetate, polyethylene terephthalate glycol (PETG). 
  • The material should provide the best impact and heat resistance
  • It should show greater efficacy in inclement weather conditions and give a comprehensive guard against chemical splashes and droplets.
  • Should come with excellent visibility to the worker

2) The shield should find a comfortable fit and should be lightweight. It should be fit to accustom to long working hours coming with greater flexibility via an adjustable headband.

3) The lens should find an anti-fogging and a scratch-resistant coating to provide extra durability and comfort for long hours working. 

4) An anti-reflective coating dissipates heat and removes the glare being reflected. The face shields also have to come with UV-protection that blocks the harmful ultraviolet rays and prevents any transmission with a unique construction they bring about.

How do you wear and clean face shields?

 How do you wear and clean face shields?

Wearing a face shield is relatively easy. You can adjust it around the face with an elastic band or adjustable strap that keeps the shield in a firm grip around. The facial area has to be comprehensively protected, and so the panel of the shield extends well below the chin area and should curve well-past around the sides. The panel's grip should be firm from the forehead, and there should not be any gaps in between the forehead and the headpiece of the shield. 

A cautious time to time cleaning of the face shields is as essential as properly wearing the same. If using a non-disposable face shield, you need to ensure that the regular usage follows a proper cleaning.

This means that you will have to clean it after every use. Steps to clean it are as follows:

  • Take the panel of the face shield and submerge it in lukewarm and soapy water. After you clean the contaminants off, use a soft sponge to clean the soapy surface gently.
  • Follow it with rinsing and gently drying your face shield with a soft towel. 
  • Don't forget to clean the headpiece separately, as you will have to be a lot more cautious while cleaning it.
  • The anti-bacterial wipes can also be used as a cleaning agent here.

Face shields are reusable, so their regular cleaning and disinfection is essential.

Face shields support you with protective care at the workplace. The risk of exposure to the virus-laden agents reduces when you wear them in combination with the face masks and respirators. But things cannot be taken for granted here as the risk of exposure to the COVID-19 infection is ever-evolving, and so you need to clean your face shields regularly. A protocol should be followed for adequately using, cleaning, and replacing the face shields, considering you are at the workplace. Follow all safety protocols and stay healthy!

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