Antiseptics are used to reduce, stop or prevent the growth of bacteria, infections, germs, and other infectious microorganisms. Widely used in hospitals and health care centers in pre-surgical procedures, on wounds, cuts, burns and scrapes of the body. There are many antiseptics available in the market.
Some are highly beneficial at killing germs, while others are only semi-effective. But for topical applications, it is necessary to apply antiseptics that are less irritable and pain-free. Antiseptics are prepared using different ingredients. Some common are iodine, alcohol, boric acid, phenol, hydrogen peroxide etc. Different products have different level of effectiveness depending on the percentage of antiseptic solutions added to it.
For treating minor scratches, scrapes, cuts at home, there is always the need of antiseptics. A cut is painful and if left unattended, it can lead to infection. To get the right antiseptic solution becomes a big problem at times. Hydrogen peroxide is a common, pain-free solution that is used. But this is not effective for larger, more lasting wounds. Alcohol and iodine in their pure forms is not recommended but since they act fast and are both effective killers of germs, they can be applied in diluted form.
The basic purpose of using an antiseptic is used to cleanse the wound or cut so that there is no further growth of microorganisms in that area. The antiseptic should be applied only after the wound has been washed with water or a sterile solution. A clean bandage is placed over the area and each time the bandage is removed, the antiseptic solution needs to be reapplied till the wound is completely healed.
A natural antiseptic which is highly effective is tea tree oil. Tea tree oil however cannot be applied directly on the wound or open skin. When the oil is diluted to a sufficient level, only then it should be allowed for topical application to open wounds. Aloe Vera is another product which is safe and effective in treating cuts, wounds and burns.
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