From The Asian Reporter, V32, #3 (March 7, 2022), page
How many times can I reuse my N95 mask?
By Emma H. Tobin
The Associated Press
AP Illustration by Peter Hamlin
NEW YORK ó How many times can I reuse my N95 mask?
It depends, but you should be able to use N95s and KN95s a
The U.S. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention says
healthcare workers can wear an N95 mask up to five times. But
experts say how often the average person can safely wear one
will vary depending on how itís used.
Using the same mask to run to the grocery store, for example,
is very different than wearing it all day at work.
The amount of time a mask is worn is more important than how
frequently itís worn, says Richard Flagan, who studies masks and
aerosols at the California Institute of Technology.
In general, he recommends limiting the use of an N95 mask to
about two or three days.
With every breath you take in an N95, particles accumulate on
the mask, Flagan says. That could make it more difficult to
breathe if the mask has trapped a lot of particles.
"They are degrading the performance of the mask," Flagan
The elastic band on the mask could also get worn out and not
fit around your face as snugly. It might also get dirty or wet,
especially if youíre using it while exercising.
If you notice any of these changes to your mask, itís time to
stop using it ó even if youíve only used it a few hours. And
since N95 masks canít be washed, they should be thrown away once
you can no longer use them.