KOMPAS.com – During a pandemic like now, everyone needs to keep themselves and the objects around them clean. One way is to use antiseptics and disinfectants. However, people are sometimes confused about the use of the two. What’s the difference between the two?
Both antiseptics and disinfectants contain chemicals to clean a surface of microorganisms that can cause disease. Microorganisms that are targeted include bacteria, viruses, fungi, and parasites.
Chemicals used as active ingredients in antiseptics and disinfectants include alcohol, phenol, iodine, and chlorine. Reported from Pharma GuidelineHere are the differences between antiseptic and disinfectant.
Also read: Bathing with Antiseptic Liquid with Povidone Iodine, Beware of Irritated Skin
Antiseptics are chemicals used to prevent the growth of microorganisms that can cause infection or disease. Antiseptics can be applied to the surface of the skin or open skin, for example on wounds.
The use of antiseptics is one of them hand sanitizer. It’s important to remember that hand sanitizer is only for use when you don’t have access to wash your hands. For example, on a trip or on public transportation. To ensure infection prevention, you should ideally continue to wash your hands with soap and running water.
Antiseptics are also contained in many everyday products, for example mouthwash, treatment creams, and other daily products.
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In the medical world, the use of antiseptics is even more widespread. Antiseptics can be used to clean mucous membrane surfaces, such as the urethra or vagina. Antiseptics are also used to clean the surface to be operated on.
Disinfectants have the same function as antiseptics. However, disinfectants are intended for inanimate surfaces.
Disinfectants in everyday life can be used to clean bathrooms, kitchens, and floors. Disinfectants are also used in hospitals to clean various instruments in hospitals to prevent the spread of infection.
During a pandemic like now, many people carry disinfectant in a spray bottle to clean the surfaces they touch frequently. For example, to clean work desks, doorknobs, buttons on lift and ATM machines, or other surfaces.
The most common disinfectants are alcohol and hydrogen peroxide. However, keep in mind that disinfectants may only be effective on some microorganisms. To maximize the effectiveness of the disinfectant you use, make sure you use the correct concentration in the disinfectant solution.
Also read: Fight Covid-19, Antiseptics Protect Medical Teams from Corona Virus
Difference between antiseptic and disinfectant
The first difference discussed above is that each antiseptic and disinfectant has a different target surface.
Some of the active ingredients used may be the same, however, the use of active ingredients in disinfectants usually has a higher concentration. This makes disinfectants dangerous when used on the skin of living things.
The use of disinfectants on the skin surface of living things can cause irritation, up to hypersensitivity reactions.
Antiseptics usually contain lower concentrations or use ingredients that are safer for use on the skin surface, so they rarely cause irritation.
However, in some people who have sensitive skin, antiseptics may cause a hypersensitivity reaction.
Thus the difference between antiseptic and disinfectant. After this, don’t use it the wrong way again.