Exam Gloves: Nitrile vs. Latex vs. Vinyl

When working in the office with patients, using suitable exam gloves is a must. There are several important factors to consider, including durability, comfort, and flexibility. The three most common types of exam gloves available include nitrile, latex, and vinyl. While they’re the three commonly selected options, there are a few differences between them. So, how do you choose between different types of exam gloves to wear in your office? Learn more about the materials provided to determine which exam gloves will meet your needs and expectations while you regularly work with patients each day.

Nitrile Gloves

One of the best ways for medical professionals to keep themselves protected when working with patients is to wear nitrile gloves. The material doesn’t contain latex, but it’s still super flexible, doesn’t rip easily, and offers protection against chemicals, blood, saliva, and various bodily fluids. Professionals often select nitrile because the material is practically puncture-proof. While punctures can still happen, it’s rare because of the strength and durability of the material. These are an excellent alternative for those who’d like to have extra protection without experiencing a reaction from wearing the gloves due to the latex.

Latex Gloves

Latex gloves were once one of the most popular types of exam gloves worn by medical professionals in different environments, including hospitals, dental offices, and primary care offices. Latex gained popularity in the late 1980s when medical professionals realized the material could protect them from contracting some infectious diseases through contact by keeping their hands protected. Unfortunately, while they’re affordable and durable, some people experience allergic reactions to the material. Anyone with a latex allergy would need to choose a different material for their exam gloves, otherwise they’d experience irritation of the skin from these gloves.

Vinyl Gloves

Vinyl gloves are the most affordable option among these three types of exam gloves. They tend to cost less, making them ideal for those trying to cut down on costs. However, vinyl gloves aren’t nearly as durable as latex or nitrile gloves, meaning they can’t offer the same level of protection that medical professionals desire when working with patients. While they can come in handy for everyday checkups and other quick and simple tasks that don’t pose a risk, these aren’t the ideal gloves for dental professionals working in their patients’ mouths or for other medical professionals encountering bodily fluids while working with patients. 

Get the Best Protective Exam Gloves for Your Office

When comparing the three types of exam gloves, nitrile and latex gloves take the lead over classic vinyl gloves that don’t offer much protection. While latex gloves are an excellent choice for some medical professionals, others who experience an allergic reaction to latex can comfortably wear nitrile gloves without irritation or discomfort. Nitrile gloves are the top choice out of all three options because of the durability, dependability, and comfort provided. If you’d like to buy protective nitrile gloves for your office, PlastCare USA is here to help. We have durable, non-slip gloves needed to complete your daily dental and medical field tasks with protection.

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