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All Face Masks Not Created Equal

n95 respirators, face masks

Face Masks and other FDA Regulated COVID-19 Products

What is the FDA?

The Food and Drug Administration (FDA or USFDA) is a federal agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The FDA promotes public health through control and supervision of product categories.

What does the FDA regulate?

  • Foods
  • Drugs
  • Medical Devices
  • Electronic Products that give off radiation
  • Cosmetics
  • Veterinary Products
  • Tobacco Products

Classifications and Types of Face Masks and Respirators

Reduce transfer of germs and contamination. Minimize contamination caused by exhaled microorganisms and contagious droplets. Protect yourself and others by using the right kind of face mask or respirator.

Disposable Face Masks

disposable face mask

A face mask, with or without a face shield. Covers the user’s nose and mouth and may or may not meet fluid barrier or filtration efficiency levels.

From anti virus masks to cleanroom masks to surgical procedure medical face masks, Harmony Lab & Safety Supplies is a trusted source for many types of disposable face masks and respirators. Popular variations include reusable face masks and earloop face masks.

Reusable Face Masks

Reusable Face Mask with Filter

Cotton ear loop face masks that you can wash and use over and over. Sewn-in filter face masks step up your protection. Comfortable, effective, and reusable, washable cloth masks are a popular standard for everyday wear. Form-fitting cloth masks are an economical choice for face protection to prevent contamination.

Face Shields

face shield with face mask and bouffant

A face shield is a device used to protect the user’s eyes and face from bodily fluids, liquid splashes, or potentially infectious materials. Generally, a face shield is situated at the crown of the head and is constructed with plastic to cover the user’s eyes and face.

A face mask with a shield is a good solution in situations where you need to add protection to the eyes against liquid splash and other factors in the environment.

The Shift to Shields

Amidst COVID-19, worldwide use of personal protection is shifting from face masks to face shields.

Surgical Masks

surgical mask with eye shield

A mask that covers the user’s nose and mouth and provides a physical barrier to fluids and particulate materials. The mask meets certain fluid barrier protection standards and Class I or Class II flammability tests.

Ideal for both medical applications and other situations that are prone to splatters or fumes such as painting, superior full-face protection.

Filtering Face-Piece Respirators

reusable filter respirator

Comparatively, a filtering facepiece respirator (FFR) is a device that with these features: disposable half-face-piece, non-powered, and a air-purifying particulate respirator. Intended for use to cover the nose and mouth of the wearer to help reduce wearer exposure to pathogenic biological airborne particulates. This reusable N95 mask uses replaceable filters with a comfortable and reusable facepiece.

Dust Masks and Respirators are considered essential protective equipment in many industries where excessive dust and air particles can seriously damage workers’ lungs and respiratory system. Wearing a Disposable Respirator is an effective and cost-effective technique to protect against harmful contaminants and pathogens that can cause serious health issues. 

N95 Mask Respirators

disposable n95 respirator

A disposable half-mask filtering facepiece respirator (FFR) that covers the user’s airway (nose and mouth) and offers protection from particulate materials at an N95 filtration efficiency level per 42 CFR 84.181. N95 FFR used in a healthcare setting is regulated by FDA. In addition they are also either a class II device that is exempt from premarket requirements, or a class II cleared device.

A respirator mask is a must-have personal protective equipment in many professions. Wearing a N95 respirator serves as a contamination protection against a number of harmful pathogens and airborne particulates, droplets, and aerosols that can cause serious illness. 

NIOSH Approved N95 Respirators

NOISH approved disposable n95 respirator

An N95 respirator, approved by NIOSH (The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health) that meets filtration efficiency level per 42 CFR 84.181.

Surgical N95 Respirators

Disposable FFR used in a healthcare setting. Particularly worn by Healthcare Providers (HCP) during procedures to protect both the patient and HCP from the transfer of microorganisms, body fluids, and particulate material. At an N95 filtration efficiency level per 42 CFR 84.181. Surgical N95 respirators are regulated by FDA. Similarly, they are either a class II device that is exempt from premarket notification requirements, or is a class II cleared device.

Your choice of face mask is important. Minimize contamination. Reduce exposure. Find cost-effective and efficient filtration for infection control in health care, and anywhere!

Make sure to get the right kind of face mask or respirator for your needs. Wearing the wrong kind of protection can be like not wearing any at at all. Need help? Get in touch! We’ll be glad to assist in your selection.

Harmony Lab & Safety Supplies

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What you should know: Face Shields, Masks, and Coronavirus

Shields could be the answer for some professionals who require more protection from Coronavirus.

Face Shields are a growing part of hospital protocol, and some infectious disease professionals are calling for greater adoption outside medical settings.

How do Face Shields protect from Coronavirus?

Unlike face masks that protect the nose and mouth, shields may also keep the virus from entering through the eyes.

The new coronavirus spreads mostly through droplets expelled from an infected person coughing, sneezing, or talking. A shield cover the eyes, mouth and nose; the areas of potential infection. Shields cover more of the face than masks, so infected droplets are less likely to land anywhere near your eyes, mouth or nose.

Face Shields protect against Infectious Droplets

Shields block droplets, which are larger particles that drop to the floor due to gravity, but not aerosols, smaller particles that may linger in the air when exhaled during a dental procedure or intubation.

A face shield can be a good option for additional coverage. Eye protection could result in a large reduction in virus infections and provides additional protection to mask wearers. In health care settings, eye protection has shown to reduce risk compared with no eye protection, but more evidence is needed.

Shield Shift: PPE usage moving from Masks to Shields … and here’s why:

Shields alone are widely thought to be just as effective in preventing an infected person from infecting others. Though guidance is offered to use face shields in conjunction with face masks until more research is available. Droplets can go out the side of shields and risk infection.

Face Shields can be easier to wear for prolonged periods, especially for those with breathing problems. Shields can help stop the outbreak, and are less restrictive than face masks.

It makes sense to pair shields with masks for added protection for medical professionals, first responders, service workers, personal trainers, barbers, dentists, and others who work closely with people.

Wrap-Around Face Shield Visor for more Protection

How to choose the best Face Shields:

  1. Waterproof, clear plastic material
  2. Shield extends below the chin and reaches to the ears
    • Ideally a wrap-around design to minimize exposure out the sides
  3. Fits without gaps at the forehead

How to safely use and handle Coronavirus PPE

Properly taking off personal protective equipment is key to preventing infection. 

  1. Use clean or new masks and shields each time. 

    use clean masks and shields every time

  2. Properly handle and dispose after use. 

    Remove shields without touching the plastic.
    Remove face masks without touching the filter.
    How to safely handle a face mask Copy

  3. Disinfect your hands

    Use soap and water and scrub for 40 seconds.
    wash your hands

  4. Clean and Store

    If reusable, clean with disinfectant spray, alcohol wipe, or rinse with soap and water before putting it away in a place where it cannot get contaminated.
    clean and store

More on how to protect yourself from COVID-19 from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

How to wear a face mask
You may also want to read: How to wear a face mask
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Preparing Supplies for Pandemics

Pandemics and wide-ranging outbreaks claim millions of lives, economic meltdowns, affect public health, and disrupt societies. It is not enough to wait for the pandemic to start spreading before taking precautions against large scale outbreaks.  It would help if you got prepared by creating a foundation against the spread.

Effective preparedness of pandemic supplies and complemented efforts will strengthen systems and prevent further spread. In this article, you will learn the key measures to put in place before and during a pandemic.

What to do before a Pandemic

First of all, don’t panic. The sound of the word pandemic may be scary, but it doesn’t mean it cannot be contained. It is good to be prepared to avoid short notice rush.  Here are some things you could do before a pandemic occurs.

  • Make plans of what measures you will take in case your family members are affected.
  • Store up additional stock both foodstuff and health care prevention products
  • Stock up essential drugs as prescribed
  • Create easy access to details of your medical records and personal health

Health Care Plans to Consider During a Pandemic

When there is an outbreak in your community, you need to take measures to limit the spread of germs by practicing good hygiene. It will help prevent infection.  As much as you may want to avoid contact with the infected people, it would be best if you had practical measures. Below are the health care items that you will need.

Health Pandemic Supplies

Disinfectant Cleaners

Disinfectant Cleaners, Wipes, and Sprays

Disinfection is the use of chemicals to kill germs on surfaces.  It protects against infection during a pandemic, which lowers the risks of spreading the virus. It can be used at home, in the hospital, and even in a market place. 

You need to be patient when disinfecting surfaces because some disinfectants take time to penetrate the surface for effective results. The concentration and temperatures of the disinfectants are different, depending on the type you are using. You need to study the manufactures recommendations before using the chemicals carefully.

Protective Gloves

Protective Disposable Gloves vinyl nitrile latex medical exam food - harmonycr.com
Disposable Gloves in Latex, Nitrile, Vinyl, and Poly

You need to wear gloves during a pandemic to avoid contact with bodily fluids, blood, excretions, or contaminated surfaces. Your gloves need to be clean all the time. Change them after every task on every patient. You may change gloves more than two times on one patient, depending on how long the treatment takes. It is because some gloves may contain a high concentration of microorganisms.

Two major factors to consider when choosing gloves are; barrier protection and allergen content. Maximize its effectiveness by choosing reliable and experienced glove manufacture. You will be sure of the good quality of the gloves and constant availability.

Cleaning Supplies

Cleaning Supplies windex clorox simple green cleaners wipes - harmonycr.com
All-Purpose Cleaning Supplies and Wipes

Cleaning supplies help in the removal of germs, dirt, and impurities, which lowers the risk of spreading germs during a pandemic. There need to be practical routine cleaning of frequently touched surfaces to avoid spread. Some of the cleaning supplies you need are;

  • All-purpose cleaners
  • Abrasive cleaners
  • Liquid detergents
  • Wipes

Face Masks

Disposable and reusable cotton face masks and face shields - harmonycr.com
Disposable Face Shields, Reusable Cotton Face Masks

Using face masks in public reduces the spread of infection. They minimize the excretion of respiratory droplets from infected people. Consider using face masks in congested places such as the market, public transport, etc.

Two types of face masks include, medical and non-medical. Prioritize the use of medical masks because it reduces the risks of transmission to zero, as compared to non-medical ones.

Disposable Gowns

Disposable Isolation Gowns

Gowns are used by hospital patients. They give easy access to the medical staff for the part of the body to be treated. Types of hospital gowns you need include;

  • Open Back gowns
  • Tie closure gowns
  •  IV gowns
  • Dignity Gowns
  • Snap closure
  • Disposable gowns

 Respirators

Dust Masks and Respirators

A respirator is a protective tool designed to protect people from inhaling hazardous air. The device covers the mouth and face, and in most cases, they cover the whole face of the entire head.  Types of respirators include;

  • Air purifying
  • Airline respirators
  • Hoods or helmets
  • Tight-fitting half masks
  • Breathing apparatus

A quote from Helene Munson says, “Behind the mask beats a loving heart, willing to save others.”

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Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards [and how to avoid them]

Cannabis Industry Safety is more critical now than ever. At a time when other industries seem to be struggling to keep afloat, the marijuana industry is the fastest growing industry that hires more and more employees every day. According to the BLS, 5.5 million jobs in the manufacturing industry were lost between 2000 and 2017. However, the legal cannabis market is expected to have over a quarter-million jobs by the year 2020.

While other industries struggle to keep afloat, the marijuana industry is the fastest-growing. Hiring more and more employees every day. According to the BLS, 5.5 million jobs in the manufacturing industry were lost between 2000 and 2017. Yet, the legal cannabis market expects to have over a quarter-million jobs by the year 2020.

Despite high employment, the industry faces some safety hazards, just like other industries. OSHA General Duty Clause – in Section 5 (a) (1) states that you as an employer should provide your employees with a workplace free from identifiable hazards that have the potentiality to cause serious harm or even death to your workers.

Cannabis Industry Safety

The Cannabis Industry includes:

  • Cultivation
  • Distribution
  • Laboratory testing
  • Manufacturing
  • Retail

Marijuana Industry Safety Hazard Breakdown

Meanwhile, Most of the hazards in the marijuana industry are like those experienced in other industries. Be aware of Grow House Hazards to avoid disasters. These hazards break down into three main categories: biological, physical, and chemical.

Biological Hazards

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards biological hazards

For instance, these types of hazards can arise from working with marijuana plants. Some of the common biological agents include bacteria and fungi. Meanwhile, these agents can affect the health of your workers by causing the throat, skin and eye irritation, nasal congestion, and other physical health effects.

Some of the most likely biological hazards that your employees may encounter include:

Mold

Employees assigned to cultivating and trimming of marijuana can be exposed to mold. Mold growth and mold spores are most likely to occur due to the high humidity levels that are required for the production of marijuana. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, the production of marijuana requires humidity levels of 70 percent.

Also, the presence of mold and mold spores in the air can cause breathing problems, coughing, wheezing, exacerbation of asthmatic conditions, and other respiratory infections.

In other words, to protect your employees from mold, you need to control moisture levels. Standing water may increase the humidity levels, and you may have to invest in proper irrigation methods.

You can also combat moisture by vacuuming instead of sweeping and increasing ventilation. Yet, you may not always know the mold spore levels after using the recommended control strategies. Ensure that your workers always wear the right personal protective equipment (PPE).

The right PPE will provide your employees with skin, eye, and respiratory protection.

Sensitizer and Allergens

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards respiratory hazards

As a result, several reported cases describing episodes of employees in the marijuana industry experiencing allergic reactions. Including anaphylaxis, and hypersensitivity to marijuana. For example, employees whose skin gets into direct contact may experience itchy skin, hives, and puffy or swollen eyes.

Like many other sensitizers, initial exposure to the plant may result in a normal response. But, repeated exposure may lead to an abnormal response. As a result, Allergens can cause itchiness, coughing, sneezing, and wheezing.
If it’s not possible to cut exposure to these allergens, start by improving the ventilation. Also consider job rotation, worker training, and using the right PPE.

Physical Hazards

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards electrical hazards

Likewise, the marijuana industry shares several physical hazards from other industries.
Some of the common physical hazards include:

Compressed Gas

In the production of marijuana, you have to use various gases such as carbon dioxide for enrichment purposes. The use of large quantities of these gases can be a threat to your employee’s safety. Compressed gases are dangerous due to the high pressure inside the cylinders. So to prevent injuries, ensure that your employees understand and use the right safety precautions.

Electrical

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards fire hazards

But for marijuana to grow, it needs a great deal of energy. Several hazards can emanate from temporary wiring, blocked electrical panels, missing breakers. And the use of electricity at high humidity levels, overloaded circuits, and lack of electrical training, among other electrical hazards.

Apart from electrical hazards, the law requires protecting your employees from dangerous energy sources.

Avoid grow house fires! Review Cannabis Industry Safety hazards present in all these areas:

  • Lighting hazards
  • Flammable or combustible liquids
  • Noise
  • Occupational injuries
  • Confined spaces

Chemical Hazards

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards chemical hazards

Further, chemicals used in the production of marijuana pose several health and safety hazards. To keep your workers safe, it’s important to provide information on any harmful substances. The best way to inform your employees is through training and information about various chemicals. You can do this through SDSs (Safety Data Sheets).

Some Cannabis Industry Safety chemical hazards in the marijuana industry include:

Carbon Dioxide

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards carbon dioxide

Also, Employees in the marijuana industry who work in cultivation may encounter carbon dioxide. Carbon dioxide is often used in dry ice or liquid gas to speed up plant growth. And in the extraction process for the production of concentrates. Carbon dioxide is an asphyxiant, which means that it displaces oxygen.

Symptoms of carbon dioxide exposure include dizziness, headache, increased heart rate, rapid breathing. And in extreme cases, it can cause unconsciousness and death.

This explains why most industries that face carbon dioxide hazards have monitoring devices.

To protect your employees, it is important that you know about the health and safety hazards of carbon dioxide. Install carbon dioxide monitors and also maintain them. Avoid using dry ice in confined places, and when your employees are handling it, they should always use the right PPE.

The right PPE may include safety glasses and disposable gloves. Additionally, it’s also important to train your employees on the harmful effects of carbon dioxide and symptoms of exposure.

Carbon Monoxide

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards carbon monoxide

Your employees are exposed to high levels of carbon monoxide during the production of marijuana. The high levels of carbon monoxide can overcome your employees without warning. The CDC reported a total of 2,244 deaths resulting from carbon monoxide poisoning. This affects employees that work in spaces with limited ventilation. 

Subsequently, Carbon dioxide can cause illness, coma, neurological damage, and death. Keep your employees safe by installing carbon monoxide monitors. And ensure that you have a ventilation system that can remove carbon monoxide.

Pesticides

Production of marijuana requires the use of insecticides and fungicides. Yet, some pesticides can cause skin and respiratory hazards. Employees cultivating or harvesting marijuana, loading or applying pesticides, cleaning equipment used in the application of pesticides can be affected.

According to the EPA Agricultural Worker Protection Standards, it’s mandatory for all employees applying pesticides or fungicides to be aware of the risks as indicated by the manufacturer. It is also important for your employees to wear the right PPE to protect them against exposure.

Protect Your Workers

Cannabis Industry Safety and Hazards PPE

In short, your workers are the lifeblood of your cannabis cultivation business. However, like other industries, your facility has the potential to expose your workers to several hazards. Such as dust, pesticides, UV light, marijuana resin, and mold spores among other hazards.

Exposure to these hazards has both short-term and long-term negative effects.

Additionally, the cleanliness of items used in the production of marijuana is important in the result of the product.

These circumstances affect indoor marijuana cultivation where conditions tend to be warm and damp, and have inadequate ventilation.

To sum up, given the unique Cannabis Industry Safety hazards, you should be familiar with the potential risks. Mitigate these hazards that can affect you, your product, and your employees. Use the right safety equipment and procedures.

Take a look at personal protective equipment, especially respiratory protection for cannabis industries and others.

For more Cannabis Industry Safety regulations and training specific to California, head to Cal/OSHA.

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Cleanroom Disposables 101

Consumables in the Cleanroom

You should acquire the right cleanroom disposables for your controlled or sensitive workplace. The correct apparel will prevent the contamination and subsequent compromise of the equipment and products in the environment.

Under ideal circumstances, you should acquire apparel to cover the entire body to minimize the risk of pollution and promote optimal worker protection. However, it is also important to evaluate the specific needs of your commercial, industrial or medical operation.

Here is a practical guide on the essential disposable apparel for your cleanroom or other controlled work environment.

Cleanroom Gloves

TechniGlove Nitrile Cleanroom Glove
TechniGlove Nitrile Cleanroom Glove

Disposable cleanroom gloves are designed to facilitate contamination control in the workplace. These are essential for your environment if you need to guarantee sterility of areas such as laboratories and cleanrooms.

When choosing your gloves, you should consider the workplace needs in terms of glove sterility, hand sizing and allergy concerns. You will find a range of sterile, latex and nitrile gloves online at Harmony.

Cleanroom Gloves are disposable gloves designed and clean-processed for contamination control and sterility required work environments including cleanrooms, laboratory and ESD work areas.

Minimize sub-micron particle contamination by using gloves designed and manufactured for Cleanrooms.

Cleanroom Coveralls

Premier Pro SMS Blue Coveralls with Hood & Boot
Premier Pro SMS Blue Coveralls with Hood & Boot

Disposable coveralls provide whole body protection, minimizing contact with contaminants. Coveralls are ideal for use in your workplace if you are involved in processes such as mixing chemicals, spraying liquids and handling particulates.

When purchasing your cleanroom coveralls, you should compare the benefits of using a standard coverall versus choosing apparel with attached hood and boots.

Disposable Coveralls provide protection from chemicals and particles in cleanrooms, laboratories, production environments, and more.

Cleanroom Lab Coats & Cleanroom Frocks

Premier Pro Blue SMS Frocks
Premier Pro Blue SMS Frocks

Cleanroom lab coats, frocks and jackets are perfect for protecting workers against soiling and controlling workplace contamination. There is a range of cleanroom disposables in this category, and you can choose the most suitable in terms of material, apparel size, general design and features like pockets.

Whether you are interested in low lint apparel for general industrial application or microporous coats for cleanrooms, you will find suitable products at Harmony.

Disposable lab coats and frocks offer protection without having to worry about laundering. Simply wear one and dispose of it properly after each use.

Frocks and lab coats are frequently used in industrial applications such as cleanrooms, laboratories or medical settings.

Cleanroom Shoe Covers

Polyethylene Coated Large White Shoe Covers

Shoe covers are essential products for protecting specific spaces against contamination due to particles lingering on shoes.

If you have a controlled work environment such as a medical facility, cleanroom or pharmaceutical operation, you can invest in heavy-duty shoe covers. There are also light-duty shoe covers for general uses like open house attendance.

These products can be used for an amazing array of applications, from preventing dirt accumulation from repairman and open houses to more demanding jobs in cleanrooms, medical facilitates, pharmaceutical environments, food processing and industrial spaces.

Cleanroom Boot Covers

Cleanroom Boot Covers
Keystone ISO 5 Cleanroom Boot Covers with Skid-Resistant Sole

Work boots are often needed in workplaces such as laboratories, processing operations and cleanrooms for worker protection. However, these can increase workplace contamination.

Disposable boot covers are designed using tough material for resilience, and the opening is elastic for a close fit. You can also choose fluid-resistant and skid-free covers for optimal performance.

Keep dirt and dust out of work spaces and keep employees safe while moving about your lab, cleanroom or work area. 

Avoid cross-contamination by keeping boots clean with disposable boot covers.

Cleanroom Face Masks

Cleanroom Face Masks
Ultraguard Blue Cleanroom Face Masks

Cleanroom face masks are crucial for protecting the work environment and the worker from contamination.

When shopping for face masks for sensitive applications such as research facilities, medical manufacturing and laboratories, you should choose disposables with ear loops and cleanroom rating for optimal protection.

If you work in a cleanroom, you know that one of the most important elements of cleanliness and safety within that environment is protecting your body and the area from contamination.

Wearing cleanroom masks can make a critical difference, but not all masks are the same. They will help protect the environment from contaminants from your mouth and body.

Cleanroom Beard Covers

Cleanroom Beard Covers
White Polypropylene Cleanroom Beard Covers

Disposable beard covers are designed to prevent the contamination of critical work areas by loose hairs from the beard. These cleanroom disposables are indispensable in laboratories and food processing operation.

It is important to note that the wrong beard covers can be uncomfortable. Therefore, ensure that your chosen products are lightweight and breathable.

Disposable Beard Covers prevent loose hairs from falling into food or critical/sensitive areas. Help keep your work environments clean and safe.

Cleanroom Arm Sleeves

Cleanroom Arm Sleeves
Keyguard Microporous 18″ Cleanroom Arm Sleeves

Sleeve protectors or disposable arm sleeves provide an additional layer of shielding against workplace hazards.

These cleanroom disposable will create a reliable shield over bare skin and clothing sleeves against chemicals and particles. The sleeves are made using a range of materials, including polypropylene, microporous, Kevlar and polyethylene.

Disposable sleeve protectors (or arm covers) are used as another layer of liquid or chemical barrier protection for the forearm. Protective sleeves can be worn over bare skin or over clothing.

Cleanroom Bouffant Caps

Cleanroom Bouffant Caps
Cleanroom Polypropylene Bouffant Caps

Bouffant caps are necessary for a range of workplaces, including food processing, pharmaceuticals and laboratories. The caps will prevent hairs and other particles from contaminating products and equipment.

Moreover, the apparel keeps hair from the neck and face. When shopping for bouffant caps, look for breathable products.

There are many industries when wearing a cap is mandatory, including food processing, electronic, pharmaceutical, medical, science labs and general industry.

These caps help to prevent minute particles from reaching products or equipment. In addition, they effectively keep hair out of your eyes and away from your work area.

Cleanroom Wipes

Cleanroom Wipes
Cleanroom Wipes

Cleanroom wipes are not the same as regular wipes. These products have low levels of lint to prevent particle contamination in the workplace.

Also, these products are softer to guarantee that sensitive devices and equipment are not damaged. Moreover, you can choose wipes with higher absorbency and resistance to chemicals and abrasion.

Like the cleanrooms themselves, cleanroom wipes have different classifications to be used in corresponding cleanrooms.

Choose cleanroom wipes that are produced in cleanroom environments, to ensure the highest possible quality.

Cleanroom Swabs

Cleanroom Swabs
TekniSwab 5″ Paddle Tip Microfiber Cleanroom Swab

Cleanroom swabs are high-quality precision swabs designed for use in critical environments. Unlike standard swabs, these cleanroom disposables provide residue-free performance.

Therefore, they will not leave particles which would contaminate your sensitive space. When choosing cleanroom swabs, you should check the sizing, shaft materials and tip design.

Cleanroom Documentation

Cleanroom Documentation
Cleanroom Notebooks

Write, print, and photocopy in clean environments. Without worry of paper particle or pen ink contamination. Keep your area clean of paper contaminants.

Writing, photocopying and printing in clean workplaces can be challenging because of the potential of ink and paper contamination.

Therefore, if you are working in a sensitive environment, you must purchase cleanroom documentation products. You will find ideal products for your needs, including notebooks, pens, sticky notes and clipboards.

Cleanroom Copy Paper
Cleanroom Copy Paper

If you are looking for cleanroom disposables for your commercial, industrial or other operation, consider looking for quality products from Harmony Lab & Safety Supplies. You will find the full range of protective apparel and other essential items for your cleanroom and critical environment at affordable prices.

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How to Avoid Germs This Flu Season

Ways to Avoid Germs this Flu Season

Germs are a concern year-round, especially in shared environments like workplaces. Yet, during flu season, it’s particularly important to avoid picking up any germs. According to the CDC, flu viruses can range in severity from mild to severe, and for more than 4,600 people per year, they’re even fatal.

The flu is most dangerous for elderly individuals, pregnant women, children, and people with certain preexisting medical conditions. With that being said, even people in excellent health can become severely ill from particularly strong strains of the virus. Since no one wants to spend days (or in some cases, even weeks) feeling their worst, there are a few tips you can implement to keep flu germs at bay in your family, workplace, and community:

Talk to Your Doc . . .

They’ll likely recommend the flu shot for you and your family members – it’s the single best way to prevent contracting the illness. Only a select portion of the population – including those who have had severe allergic reactions to the vaccine – should avoid flu shots. However, it’s always a good idea to get a professional’s opinion. Also, keep in mind that flu vaccinations wear off over time. The vaccine is updated each year to reflect current strains, so be sure to follow the vaccination schedule recommended by your physician.

. . . Don’t Consider Yourself “Immune”

If you’ve received a flu vaccination, it doesn’t mean you’re completely immune to contracting the virus. In fact, the CDC reports the risk of contracting the flu is reduced by 40-60% in patients who receive the vaccine. The overwhelming majority of medical experts still consider it worth getting, but know that it protects against certain strains than others. This means you’ll still need to take precautions to avoid falling ill, so keep reading even if you’ve received or plan to receive a flu shot.

Encourage Employees to Stay Home

The best way to keep flu germs out of the workplace is to prevent infected employees from bringing them in. If you manage a team or oversee a business, encourage your personnel to stay home when they’re feeling under the weather. Most strains are highly contagious, and can even be contracted when you breathe in a flu aerosol particle from ten feet away!

Wash Hands Regularly

There are certain environments – such as your home and personal work space – which you can control and keep clean. In public environments, however, you’re bound to come into contact with flu viruses at one point or another. To limit your exposure, wash your hands often, and always before eating or touching your face. When you’ve come into contact with frequently-used public objects, like cafeteria trays, ATMs, and door handles, wash your hands or use hand sanitizer.

Limit the Spread of Infection

Fight viruses with the Curad Anti-Viral Face Mask

Most doctor’s offices now provide face masks in the patient waiting area, which should be donned by potentially infected visitors. If you own or manage a healthcare facility, keep an ample supply of anti-viral face masks on hand for the flu season. Nurses and doctors may also wish to put on face masks before treating potentially infected patients to reduce their risks of contracting the illness. Also, keep in mind the virus can be spread up to seven days before a person exhibits symptoms. Thus, it’s a good idea to avoid sharing straws, makeup products, and similar objects with others.

Keep Your Spaces Clean

Wipe away germs with CleanTex Phone Wipes

According to a Clorox survey, 41% of workers say they rarely – if ever – disinfect their desks. Your cubicle and similar personal spaces can harbor countless germs, so taking extra precautions to keep them clean during flu season is essential to your wellness. From your cubicle to your household, wipe down surface areas often to keep germs at bay. Keep office environments well-stocked with cleaning supplies which can be used safely on electronics like touch-screen computers and keyboards. Use CleanTex Phone Wipes for desk equipment and phones and use CleanTex Clean and Safe wipes or Purell Sanitizing Hand Wipes for your hands.

Cover Your Cough

If you do get the flu or feel like it could be coming on, be sure to cover your mouth when sneezing or coughing. Afterwards, clean your hands to prevent passing your germs onto any surface areas. The flu virus isn’t just spread by airborne respiratory droplets; it can also be passed by skin-to-skin contact and by touching a contaminated surface. Leave a germ-free surface by cleaning with disinfectant wipes.

Practice Healthy Habits

Eating a nutrient-rich diet is a great way to boost your body’s immunity, but many individuals still fall short in certain vitamins and minerals. Talk to your doctor about taking a multivitamin to stay as healthy as possible, and be sure to get plenty of sleep. If you do contract the flu, stay hydrated and seek medical attention if any symptoms become extreme.

Keep your office environment clean this flu season by stocking up on disinfecting wipes, sanitizers, anti-viral face masks and more through Harmony. We have everything you need to stop germs in their tracks. Visit our online storefront for a full list of products, or get in touch with a product specialist for assistance.