Bacteria and germs

Bacteria and germs

Germs are microbes including bacteria, viruses, protozoa and fungi that cause illness and infections if they enter our bodies. They’re unavoidable. They’re in the food we eat and the water we drink. You can find them in soil and on plants and animals, and on just about every surface. They’re often released into the air when a person coughs or sneezes, and can survive on the hands to then be spread to other surfaces like tables and door handles.

How infection happens

Not all germs are bad. Some, like the bacteria that lives in your intestines, help to keep you healthy. It’s your immune system’s job to protect you against the germs that cause infection. Infection occurs when viruses, bacteria, or other microbes are able to breach the immune system, enter your body and begin to multiply. These germs usually enter our bodies through the mouth, eyes, nose, the nether regions, or through wounds or bites that breach the skin barrier.

Risk factors

Pathogenic microbes (i.e. an organism that causes, or can cause, disease) challenge our immune systems in many ways. They kill cells and can disrupt cell function. Our body responds by raising its temperature to inactivate the virus, secreting a chemical called interferon which blocks viruses from reproducing, or by assembling the immune system’s antibodies to target the virus. Symptoms vary depending on the organism causing the infection, but often include fever and fatigue.

Where viruses come from and how we get them




A virus-filled particle of breath or spittle that comes out of the nose or mouth of an infected individual when they breathe, speak, cough or sneeze. They generally fall to the ground within 2 meters of the person who expels them.


A microscopic virus-packed particle that's expelled from an infected person's mouth when breathing, speaking, coughing or sneezing. Unlike a droplet, smaller aerosol particles can remain suspended in the air.


An object covered with virus particles, possibly because someone recently sneezed or coughed respiratory droplets onto it, or swiped a germ-covered hand on it. A glass could become a formite in that manner for example. The particles could survive from several hours to several days.

Protect yourself from germs

There are simple steps you can take to protect yourself from germs. Wash and sanitize your hands often. Avoid touching common areas in public places, and keep your hands away from your face. Eating well and getting enough rest helps your immune system to stay strong, and social distancing prevents the spread of contagious illnesses. Wearing a germ mask also provides flu protection and helps to reduce transmission of viruses like the common cold and COVID-19.

How our filtration helps against germs


Airinum masks use a multilayer filter technology to provide superior protection from germs. Both the Urban Air Mask 2.0 and the Lite Air Mask filter out more than 99.9% of particles down to 0.3μm in size.

Submicron dust filtering:

The bacteria masks provide a submicron dust filtering capability to protect against PM2.5 and even smaller particles.


The technology is tested at RISE R&D center in Sweden and is certified for GB 2626-2006 KN95, similar to an industrial N95 mask or N95 respirator.

Our masks Filters out 99.9% of what you breathe

Grey circle indicates the size of human hair

Beach sand

50-180 μm

White blood cell

25 μm


15 μm

Dust particle (PM 10)

< 10 μm

Red blood cell

> 10 μm

Respiratory droplets

5-10 μm

Dust particle (PM 2.5)

7-8 μm


1–3 μm

Wildfire smoke

0.4–0.7 μm


0.3–0.5 μm

Science is part of our nature

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