Just like other environmental allergies, latex allergies can be very serious and are finally getting properly diagnosed across the population. Because of the severity of some latex allergies, many companies decide to avoid latex in all of their products. It is so important that essential products and items used for health and safety purposes do not contain any latex or have some non-latex versions to be used in cases of a serious allergy.
Just the facts
Latex is essentially rubber and water that goes through a process to make a very stretchy and resilient material. It is used in everything from gloves to tires to shoes. Latex retains its original shape and size even when it is stretched.
Like many other allergies that people suffer from, latex allergies identify latex as a harmful substance to that body and the body reacts to it. Some reactions are very mild and include redness and hives. However, there are people that suffer from much more severe and even deadly symptoms of latex allergies such as:
- Runny nose
- Watery eyes
- Scratchy throat
- Trouble breathing
- Nausea and vomiting
- Loss of consciousness
- Rapid or weak pulse
It is for these reasons most medical professionals have completely eliminated the use of latex gloves and other materials from the practices.
If you live in a hot climate you’ve probably seen your tires degrade and lighten in color faster than the normal warranty period indicates. There are two reasons for this: heat and weather. Rubber, which is the natural substance latex is made out of, can withstand heat better than some of its synthetic counterparts, but tends to break down quickly when exposed to persistent high temperatures.
Weathering as well plays a part in the degradation of rubber. Sunlight, large fluctuations in temperatures and ozone eat away at the integrity of the material and cause it to crack, fade and lose its overall structure and ability to hold its form.
Other elements that affect the integrity of rubber and latex are oils, greases, and fats. Since all of us have naturally occurring oils within our skin, extended exposure to the skin would break down latex due to these oils.
Before we understood many people had severe reactions to latex, masks with latex were used by doctors, dentists, and other professionals in their daily businesses. Latex has a knack for creating a perfect seal on a mask around the nose and mouth. This highly effective seal prevents harmful materials from getting in through openings loose-fitting masks would allow. Due to the growing numbers of people that have latex reactions, manmade materials have been crafted to replace these and many other items.
Fast-forward to today
As a country, we are facing a pandemic never before seen in most lifetimes plus other persistent issues like super viruses, harsh working conditions, smog and pollution. The need for a form-fitting, sealing mask, especially one that is reusable has reached an all-time high.
We’ve all heard about the shortage of medical masks, but it isn’t just frontline workers that need to be protected. Painters, construction workers, dentists, hygienists, home inspectors and so many more professionals rely on having N95 and P100 masks to help protect them.
It is for all these people and so many others that we decided to create our reusable respirators. We took great care to make sure none of our products have any latex or rubber in them. They are made with a thermoplastic elastomer, which has many of the same flexibility, sealing and strong structure attained by rubber, but removes the possibility of any latex allergic reactions.
We feel strongly about making products that are safe for the public at large, while still providing the same protection that you would receive with an N95 respirator.