Health and Fitness

Why You Shouldn’t Buy 99-Percent Isopropyl Alcohol as Disinfectant

Stick with the 70-percent volume of isopropyl alcohol.
IMAGE PIXABAY
ILLUSTRATOR ROLAND MAE TANGLAO
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In the wake of the coronavirus scare, people have been hoarding rubbing alcohol from groceries, convenience stores, and online stores. Nowadays, you would be lucky to find a tiny bottle of hand sanitizer. But in their rush to purchase the remaining stocks of antiseptic disinfectants, people missed a crucial point in rubbing alcohol knowledge: Never buy anything above or below the 70-percent volume.

 

Seventy-percent isopropyl kills viruses and bacteria more effectively.

If you search for the keywords “Alcohol Lazada” now, Google will show you a variety of industrial-size rubbing alcohol with 95- to 99-percent volume. Do not buy these.

Isopropyl alcohol is most effective as an antimicrobial agent at 70-percent concentration precisely because of its 30-percent water concentration. Water is a crucial element in destroying the cell walls and membranes of viruses and bacteria because it acts as a catalyst in breaking down their proteins.

This 30-percent water content in isopropyl alcohol also slows down the evaporation of the solution, further helping in killing bacteria in your hands.

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What about the 40-percent isopropyl alcohol: Is this effective against bacteria?

Anything below 68-percent and 72-percent isopropyl alcohol is not considered rubbing alcohol for household use. Those bottles of 40-percent solutions are not disinfectants or antiseptic, and are used to clean superficially. You will only tickle the coronavirus in your hands if you use this.

Why are there 99-percent isopropyl alcohol sold online?

This is for industrial use only. This solution is used for water-sensitive surfaces, and is typically used by manufacturers of computer parts, medical devices, and circuit boards, and mobile phones. It is also less stable and has a higher risk of causing fires.

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Mario Alvaro Limos
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