For some people, hypochlorous acid may sound a little too similar to hydrochloric acid, a highly corrosive substance that’s also known as hydrogen chloride or muriatic acid.
Hypochlorous acid (HOCl) may also sound like a tough name. However, it’s one of the most effective disinfectant cleaners that’s also gentle enough to use on the skin and on food products in some instances.
But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.
There’s so much more about HOCl that you need to know to appreciate its many benefits. Here, we’ll answer common questions like “is hypochlorous acid harmful to humans?” But first, let’s get to know the basics of hypochlorous acid.
What Is Hypochlorous Acid?
HOCl is considered a weak acid. It is a naturally occurring substance in the bodies of mammals,including humans, that’s created by white blood cells. HOCl is made to defend our bodies against harmful pathogens like bacteria and viruses. It attacks these microorganisms and breaks down their cell walls, ultimately eliminating unhealthy invaders.
Hypochlorous acid fascinated chemists so much that they studied it closely to find out how it can be made using a basic saltwater solution and through the process of electrolysis.
Today, HOCl is available in large quantities and enjoys widespread use in homes, hospitals, schools, restaurants, and other industries.
Uses of Hypochlorous Acid
Hypochlorous acid is a very effective, strong sanitizer and disinfectant that has several uses, including the following:
- Killing viruses including SARS-SoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19
- Disinfecting swimming pools to kill molds and other pathogens
- Making cosmetics and personal care products, including baby items
- Effective and safe disinfection for home, work, and other commercial applications
- Treating mask acne, different kinds of infections in both humans and pets, and for wound care
- Cleaning food products
- Skincare and eye care
And since its only two ingredients are water and salt, it does not pose any environmental hazards. Of course, you still need to ensure the solution you are using is free from surfactants, harmful chemicals, and other additives.
Is Hypochlorous Acid Toxic?
Hypochlorous acid water possesses strong disinfection properties and is a useful cleaning material, sanitizer, and commercial deodorizer. It is 80 to 100 times stronger than bleach in surface disinfection.
It has been proven effective as an antibacterial, antimicrobial, and antifungal agent that’s safe for use on foods, plants, the skin, and various types of surfaces requiring cleaning and disinfection.
However, despite its enviable reputation as a powerful disinfectant and cleanser, hypochlorous acid is considered non-toxic.
Hypochlorous Acid and the Skin
Aside from the uses of HOCl as an effective disinfectant, hypochlorous acid products for the skin are also available to fight acne and skin infections. Dermatologists recommend it to soothe and repair skin for patients who have undergone dermatologic and plastic surgery procedures. It is also used to address certain skin conditions, such as eczema, psoriasis, and rosacea.
Since it is allergen-free and made from electrolyzed basic household ingredients, hypochlorous acid is already being used to address acne mechanica, which is caused by friction, pressure, or rubbing on the skin. In a way, medically approved HOCl functions as a hand sanitizer for the facial region.
And since it’s gentle on the skin, hypochlorous acid is also used as an on-the-go hand cleanser.
Disinfecting With Hypochlorous Acid
As a popular and potent disinfectant, hypochlorous acid is often used for environmental disinfection. This is why it is commonly used to clean and disinfect enclosed spaces in healthcare facilities like hospitals and clinics, and establishments like schools, shops, and offices.
Then there’s also hypochlorous acid for the eyes. As an already-popular eyelid cleansing product, HOCl is now available in easy-to-use spray bottles.
Hypochlorous acid is also used in dentistry to treat water lines and as a mouth rinse to treat periodontal disease and reduce plaque.
HOCl is a natural disinfectant suitable for cleaning a variety of the dirtiest environments and some can even be used on humans and pets. The fact that hypochlorous acid is free from chemical additives and toxins greatly contributes to its being a popular choice for residential, medical, commercial and industrial applications.
Hypochlorous Acid – Clearly the Better Choice
Despite its scary-sounding name, hypochlorous acid has numerous beneficial properties and made by the human body.
It’s very effective, powerful and affordable too, so it’s the logical choice for everyone.
If you’re looking for hypochlorous acid products, please get in touch with us. You may also check out our resources page if you need more information on hypochlorous acid and the many benefits it provides.
Please Note- this article describes a variety of uses for HOCl, not all of which are applicable to PathoNex. Please review the PathoNex label for recommended uses and handling.