Latex examination gloves have been in use for over 100 years and are still one of the most popular disposable glove varieties on the market. For more than 30 years, Unigloves has been supporting health professionals with the highest quality of protective disposable gloves. We have developed our extensive range of safety gloves to include a comprehensive selection of latex examination gloves, offering health professionals, hospitals, dental and veterinary surgeries, and more, the perfect disposable safety glove solution for their application.
In this article, we uncover the benefits and uses of latex examination gloves and highlight some of the most popular products in our range, to help you find the right glove for your workplace.
What are latex gloves?
Latex gloves are widely used in healthcare and medical fields, as well as many other workplace applications, around the globe. These gloves are made from natural rubber latex (NRL) sourced from the Hevea brasiliensis or ‘rubber’ tree. Natural rubber latex is commonly found in many household items, and latex examination gloves, in particular, are one of the most widely used types of disposable glove in both household and industrial applications.
Originally developed by Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company to protect surgeons’ hands against a range of chemicals and biological hazards, latex gloves have come a long way in terms of design and manufacturing. Latex gloves are now one of the most common types of PPE (personal protective equipment) on the market. Latex gloves remain a popular choice for many industries due to the level of protection they provide users against many workplace hazards, including bodily fluids, pathogens (including bacteria, viruses and other microorganisms) and certain chemicals. However, the use of latex gloves can mean challenges for some workplaces.
Latex glove allergies
According to the HSE, anywhere between 1% and 6% of the population is thought to be sensitive to latex, although not all of those affected will develop symptoms. Whilst the symptoms caused by latex allergies are relatively mild in most people (and include itchiness and irritation of the skin, for example), some people can suffer from more severe side effects. Latex allergies, or ‘Type I sensitisation’, are more common in those who come into regular contact with latex products, which means that nurses, doctors and care workers, amongst others, are more highly represented in the reported statistics.
Despite the potential risks of latex allergies, the material is still an incredibly popular choice for many workplaces due to the many benefits of latex gloves over other options such as nitrile gloves and vinyl gloves. As a result, the manufacturing of latex gloves has advanced in recent years to reduce the risk of Type I sensitisation for users of the gloves. Modern manufacturing techniques have developed a range of solutions to latex allergies, which can significantly reduce the risk of allergic reactions and the development of Type I and Type IV sensitisation in wearers. These include low-protein and powder-free formulas, which have been incredibly effective in reducing risks to workers in the workplace.
Why choose latex examination gloves?
Latex is still one of the most popular choices of glove material for healthcare and medical fields, as it is disposable, sterile, and hygienic. It offers wearers protection against both biological and chemical hazards, making it an ideal choice for those who come into contact with patients during medical examinations, dentistry, care work and veterinary work.
Their elasticity makes latex examination gloves suitable for tasks where a high degree of dexterity, touch sensitivity, and flexibility are required. For this reason, they are often preferred by surgeons, dentists and dental hygienists, vets, and other medical practitioners. Furthermore, they offer excellent tear resistance, puncture resistance, and protection against many caustics and detergents.
Other applications for latex examination gloves
Latex is an extremely versatile disposable glove material, and for this reason, latex examination gloves can be found in a range of workplaces throughout several industries. The chemical resistance, comfortable fit, and tear resistance of latex gloves makes them a popular choice in the following fields:
- Cleaning and janitorial
- Chemical manufacturing and use
- Food processing
- Manufacturing and assembly
- Pharmaceutical work
Unigloves latex examination gloves range
We’ve been perfecting our latex gloves range for the last 30 years, offering our clients the very latest in protection, durability, and comfort.
Our ranges include many latex glove varieties, to provide you with the perfect latex glove solution for any application. Here are just a few of our most popular latex glove varieties:
For regular wearers of gloves, dermatitis can become a painful side effect. The powder-free latex gloves featured in the Vitality range have been designed with sensitive skin in mind, to offer revitalisation to rough and damaged skin. Infused with our proprietary moisturising coating, these gloves trap skin moisture during use to reduce visible dryness and have your hands feeling healthier and softer than standard, non-coated gloves.
Vitality latex gloves are no ordinary glove. Our Vitality gloves are:
- Washed inside and out, for up to 10 times longer than standard gloves, making them cleaner, softer, and more comfortable
- Specially treated cuffs that won’t catch on your skin when donning or removing
- Minimise the risk of Type I and Type IV sensitisation through our unique manufacturing processes
- Fully textured across the glove (not just the fingertips) to offer better grip
Popular with tattoo artists around the world, our Select Black gloves maximise barrier protection and comfort while providing superior grip and dexterity – allowing artists to focus on the job at hand, without interference from their gloves.
Our Select Black gloves are:
- Softer, easier to don and remove, and more comfortable
- Beaded cuff for extra strength and protection against liquid rollback
- Significantly reduced risk of allergies thanks to our unique Advanced production method
- Available in standard length or extended cuffs, offering wrist and forearm protection
Available in four colours, our Allsafe Household Gloves range allows for colour-coding to ensure against cross-contamination in the work environment. Their textured finish provides enhanced barrier protection, while the beaded cuffs and raised grip pattern makes these gloves superior grip and comfort.
Our Allsafe Household Gloves feature:
- Protection against chemicals such as harsh cleaners, strong detergents, animal fats, alcohols and detergents
- Interior flock lining to keep hands dry – perfect for dishwashing, cleaning and other tasks requiring contact with liquids
- Packed in Euro-hanger packaging and individually barcoded, making them ideal for retail sale
Latex examination gloves are so versatile that they’re widely used in medical and healthcare fields, and more. Their applications are almost endless, thanks to their superior elasticity, touch sensitivity and the protection they provide against a range of chemical and biological hazards. Due to the ongoing popularity of latex gloves, we’ve dedicated years to perfecting our manufacturing process to offer our clients the highest quality in latex examination gloves, both reducing the risk of Type I and Type IV sensitivity in wearers, and improving the strength, durability and ease-of-wear of our range.
For help selecting the right glove material for your workplace, consult our glove materials guide, or get in touch with our team today.