Hydrogen peroxide is a chemical agent, usually represented chemically as H2O2. It is commonly found in kitchens and bathroom products for the purpose of disinfection. They are also used for clearing off and sanitization of minor cuts. Another important uses of hydrogen peroxide is its bleaching action or whitening properties; for example, it can be used effectively for whitening of teeth. Some people also buy hydrogen peroxide gargles for teeth whitening purpose. However, you should know the proper uses of hydrogen peroxide as gargles.
Gargling with Peroxide: Is It Safe?
Gargling with peroxide is considered as safe and effective for many oral ailments and cosmetic purposes. However, it is imperative to mention that hydrogen peroxide also possesses mild acidic properties, so it must not be swallowed into stomach. Some key benefits of hydrogen peroxide gargles include treating sore throat and thick mucus secretions from sores with its mild antiseptic properties.
However, large amounts of hydrogen peroxide inhaled by lungs or contacted with eyes may lead to development of problems like breathing difficulties, abdominal cramps, generalized body pain, eye irritation, chest pain, vomiting (may associated with blood in it), throat burning, etc.
Gargling with Peroxide: How to Do It Properly
Because of its adverse effects, some precautions must be considered when using hydrogen peroxide as gargling reagent. The most important one is to dilute hydrogen peroxide to a safe percentage.Two different percentages commonly used are 1% and 3%. People may avoid using 3% hydrogen peroxide because they consider it concentrated, but actually it is safe. You can safely use it or dilute it with more water. Another thing that should be mentioned is never swallow hydrogen peroxide. If you are afraid of swallowing, you can first practice using water. You can also ask a dentist for more tips about how to safely gargle with hydrogen peroxide. Below are the steps for gargling with hydrogen peroxide properly.
1. Amount of Hydrogen Peroxide
The amount of hydrogen peroxide which must be taken for gargles is 2 teaspoons which is equivalent to 10 milliliters.Gargling should be done four times a day and it is recommended to do it after meals and before going to bed.The solution of hydrogen peroxide must not be placed in cool temperature; it must be placed at the room temperature.
2. Rinse with the Solution
Rinse the mouth with hydrogen peroxide for at least a minute.Hold the solution over the throat so that the antiseptic properties for throat cleaning will be achieved.In case the solution is swallowed in stomach, consult with the health care provider.
3. Spit the Gargling Solution
Spit the gargling solution soon after rinsing in mouth for up to one minute. If any of the symptoms such as swelling in throat, pain, redness or fever appears, immediately stop using the gargle.It is recommended that children below 3 years of age must not use hydrogen peroxide solution.
- Hydrogen peroxide should not be given to children as it can cause severe poisoning in children. Plain water or salt gargles should be used instead.
- Dilution of hydrogen peroxide gargles must necessarily be done before using it.