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Guide to Rubbing Alcohol and Its Uses

When we hear the term isopropyl alcohol it simply refers to what we all know to be rubbing alcohol. There is also another kind of alcohol that is related to rubbing alcohol which is the alcohol that we drink but this is not the same although they are related, and drinking alcohol is in the form of ethanol. Rubbing alcohol, unlike drinking alcohol, is not suitable for human consumption but it has in it many of the chemical properties of ethanol. Some characteristics or properties of rubbing alcohol is that it is water soluble and has a low boiling point. Rubbing alcohol can be used in many household applications because of its chemical properties.

Many times we use alcohol for cleaning things because it has the ability to do so. Many household products that we use like toilet bowl cleaners or window cleaners actually have a portion of isopropyl alcohol in them. If you use rubbing alcohol on sticky gum residue, it can dissolve it quickly. Sap or chewing gum is also difficult to remove by itself, but with rubbing alcohol, you can remove it from your hands or from any surface. If there are hairspray residue from mirrors and windows, then these can be removed by using rubbing alcohol. You don’t damage the DVD or CD plastic even if you rub it with rubbing alcohol which can take away the many fingerprints that are sticking to it.

People who love to swim know what it is like to have water stuck deep in the ear canal. It can really irritate you especially when your ears start to hurt. And you can get really annoyed when you try to remove the residual water which makes it difficult for you to hear. The worst thing that can happen is that if there is moisture deep in the ear, it creates an ideal environment for infectious pathogens which lead to a painful swimmers’ ear.

This condition known as swimmers’ ear can be prevented by using isopropyl alcohol. According to scientific studies, isopropyl alcohol evaporates faster than water. So a puddle of water in the ear takes more time to evaporate than a puddle of rubbing alcohol. So if you put rubbing alcohol inside your ear and it mixes with the water inside, then what you have is a mixture which evaporates faster than water. Thus, the ear dries faster and infection is prevented.

With isopropyl alcohol, you can sterilize or disinfect items in your home. This is because it kills bacteria, fungi, and viruses. Pathogens die with alcohol so nurses rub their skin with this before giving an injection. Isopropyl alcohol is also sprayed on hospital surfaces to prevent the spread of disease. In our homes, we can spray alcohol on our counter tops and other non-porous items which we commonly touch instead of using expensive antibacterial agents.

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