Facemasks or respirators
If you must have close contact with the sick person (for example, hold a sick infant), spend the least amount of time possible in close contact and try to wear a facemask (for example, surgical mask) or N95 disposable respirator.
An N95 respirator that fits snugly on your face can filter out small particles that can be inhaled around the edges of a facemask.
Compared with a facemask however, it is harder to breathe through an N95 mask for long periods of time.
Wear an N95 respirator or surgical mask if you help a sick person with respiratory treatments using a nebulizer or inhaler, as directed by their doctor. Respiratory treatments should be performed in a separate room away from common areas of the house when at all possible.
Used facemasks and N95 respirators should be taken off and placed immediately in the regular trash so they don’t touch anything else.
Avoid re-using disposable facemasks and N95 respirators if possible. If a reusable fabric facemask is used, it should be laundered with normal laundry detergent and tumble-dried in a hot dryer.
After you take off a facemask or N95 respirator, clean your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
Facemasks and respirators may be purchased at a pharmacy, building supply or hardware store.
Crisis Preparedness and Response Centre
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