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Home Health The 3 Types of Medical Gloves (and Their Uses)

The 3 Types of Medical Gloves (and Their Uses)


An estimated two to ten million bacteria are living on the surface of your body, just from your fingertips to your elbow. So if you work in the medical profession, you need to protect your patients and yourself by wearing gloves.

Disposable surgical gloves protect medical professionals like doctors and nurses from direct contact with harmful substances and objects. Blood, infections, and sharp tools can cause serious injury or illness.

There are different types of disposable medical gloves to meet different needs. Let’s take a look at the three most common types of medical gloves.

1) Latex

When it comes to the different types of medical gloves and their uses, latex is the most popular choice. Latex gloves are made of natural rubber, and they protect against bacteria and viruses. They have been around for decades and originally became popular in the 1980s and 1990s against bloodborne pathogens like HIV.

Latex gloves come in powdered and powder-free options and offer moderate protection. When it comes to the advantages of latex, the gloves are comfortable, flexible, and secure. In addition, they offer a high level of tactile sensitivity, making them useful for doctors when examining patients.

The downside to latex is that many people have latex allergies. Because of that, some medical professionals choose to go with types of medical exam gloves without latex.

2) Nitrile 

Nitrile gloves are more expensive than latex, as they’re made of synthetic materials. They protect from chemicals and viruses. While they are not as tactile, they are stretchy and durable.

Because nitrile gloves are more resistant to chemicals, they can be used in potentially hazardous environments with corrosive chemicals. Some medical exams and treatments require exposure to those types of hazards.

In addition to being latex-free, nitrile gloves are also protein-free and allergy-free. Because of their high level of protection and durability, they are a popular choice for surgeons.

You can learn more about nitrile gloves here:

3) Vinyl 

Vinyl gloves are made from a petroleum-based film known as PVC. These gloves are the most inexpensive to manufacturing, making them the most economical option for hospitals and medical facilities.

Vinyl medical gloves are comfortable and soft, but they are not as durable as latex or nitrile. They are, however, similar to latex in regard to sensitivity.

Vinyl gloves were introduced in the 1990s as a latex alternative. Because of their low cost and limited protection abilities, vinyl gloves are best used in low-infection and non-hazardous environments.

In addition to being less durable, they offer limited protection against biomedical hazards and chemicals. This is because when the vinyl is stretched, the integrity of the protected barrier is compromised.

Learn About the Types of Medical Gloves and More 

Now that you know about the three most common types of medical gloves, you can make an informed decision as to which type the best for you, your needs, and your safety.

No matter what you choose, make sure the gloves are high-quality. This reduces the risk of tearing or puncturing.

If you’re looking to learn more about medical accessories or other topics, take a look around our website.

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Written by
Suza Anjleena

Suza Anjleena is a Blogger, Tech Geek, SEO Expert, and Designer. Loves to buy books online, read and write about Technology, Gadgets, Gaming, LifeStyle, Education, Business, and more category articles that are liked by most of her audience. You can contact me via Email to: Thanks

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