Employees working in the dental field, including dental hygienists, assistants and dentists across the different specialities are required to wear N95 respirator masks when working with patients. This is a regulation declared by OSHA to protect both patients and the dental professionals across the industry. N95 respirator masks are designed and engineered to filter out harmful particles that could potentially be breathed in during routine procedures. Fit tests are performed by medical professionals to determine if the mask is able to fit and work properly, filtering out anything harmful. AFC Urgent Care Natick has the tools to perform respirator fit tests seven days a week for professionals in the dental industry. 

Materials needed at your respirator fit test

You will need to bring your mask to your respirator fit test, whether you have selected it yourself or your employer has provided it for you. The mask must be NIOSH certified and proven to provide protection against particles and potential toxins found working in a dentist’s office. In addition to the mask, please bring any additional safety equipment you may wear that could interfere with its fit and function. Safety equipment that should be brought to your appointment includes safety goggles, face shields, gowns and ear protection. Men should be clean-shaven as facial hair may interfere with how the mask fits, allowing for gaps for particles to enter. 

What is done during a fit test?

The respirator fit test is performed by performing several exercises for one minute at a time. Testing agents used to test the effectiveness of the mask will be determined by the employer. Exercises performed during the test include:

  • Regular breathing while wearing the mask
  • Deep breathing while wearing the mask
  • Range of motion, including up and down, side to side and bending over while wearing the mask
  • Speaking through the mask
  • Regular breathing after activity including walking in the mask

The result of the test is dependent on whether or not the mask can be worn effectively and comfortably for the duration of the workday and whether a followup evaluation will be required. After the test is completed, you will be provided with a statement from our staff with the results or any recommendations. 

Respirator Fit Test for Dentists & Hygienists in Natick, MA

If you are working in the dental field and are required to wear an N95 respirator mask for the duration of your shift, visit AFC Urgent Care Natick for a fit test! Our center is open seven days a week and offers a range of occupational health services. For any questions or to set up an appointment, please call 508-650-6208.