Dr VK Monga / Visuals of smog
Dr VK Monga / Visuals of smog

Surgical masks not an effective solution to air pollution: IMA

ANI | Updated: Nov 01, 2018 23:11 IST

New Delhi [India], Nov 1 (ANI): As the pollution level in Delhi and the National Capital Region (NCR) is deteriorating day-by-day, people are opting for surgical masks to protect themselves from the toxic intake of the pollutants in the air.

However, the Indian Medical Association (IMA) revealed that the surgical mask used by the people must not be that effective to prevent particulate matter (PM) from entering the lungs.

Dr. VK Monga, Secretary of the IMA, said that "technically speaking surgical mask does not help to prevent particle matters from entering your lungs, people just use it for psychological satisfaction."

He said that as the surgical mask is cheap and widely available, commoners’ use it perceiving that they are protecting themselves from the toxin content, which in reality is not true.

Considering the critical situation, experts are advising people to use N-95 and N-99 masks to protect themselves.

Dr Monga observed that the mask which is technologically equipped to prevent particulate matter from entering lungs cannot be used more than 8 to 10 hours and the person using it have to buy a new one, which is a costly affair.

Meanwhile, Dr. Radha Goyal, Deputy Director of Indian Pollution Control Association, said that the level of pollution is escalating day-by-day. However, the condition exaggerates during winter as the dust particle comes relatively down unlike summer.

Emissions caused by vehicles are one of the major contributors to air pollution. In Delhi and NCR, stubble burning in the neighbouring state also contributes to it.

Air quality in the national capital showed a slight improvement today, a day after it plunged to 'hazardous' category.

According to the government-run System of Air Quality and Weather Forecasting and Research (SAFAR), the Air Quality Index (AQI) in Delhi improved from 442 on Wednesday to 370 on Thursday.

SAFAR further predicted that for the next couple of days, the national capital and nearby areas would continue to reel under high levels of air pollution. (ANI)