Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
|Formula weight||242.23 amu|
|Melting point||103-105 C|
|S0gas, 1 bar||N/A|
|S0liquid, 1 bar||N/A|
|Ingestion||May cause serious injury or death.|
|Inhalation||May cause serious injury or death.|
|Skin||In low concentration may cause redness, peeling, and increase vulnerability to sunburn. In high concentration may cause serious burns.|
|Pregnancy category||C (source)|
Benzoyl peroxide, like most peroxides, is a powerful bleaching agent. Contact with clothing or hair can cause permanent color dampening almost immediately. At high concentrations, benozyl peroxide is highly flammable and explosive and should be handled with care. In the United States, use of any medication that contains more then 10% benzoyl peroxide requires a prescription.
Benzoyl peroxide is highly effective in the treatment of most forms of acne. It is typically placed over the infected areas in gel or cream form, and in concentrations of 10% and lower. However, it can cause dryness and irritation. A small percentage of people are sensitive to it and this is characterised by burning itching, peeling or possibly swelling. It is best to use a little at first and build up as the skin becomes accustomed to the treatment. To avoid this, it is worth looking for a treatment that contains around 2.5% benzoyl peroxide, which studies show is as effective as the 10% options but with less side affects. While it is not fully known how benzoyl peroxide works in fighting acne, it is presumed that benzoyl peroxide is easily absorbed into pores where it works by interfering with acne bacterial metabolism through oxidization.
Other common uses for benzoyl peroxide include dyeing hair, and as a common active ingredient in teeth whitening systems (especially in Europe where hydrogen peroxide is tightly regulated). It is also is used in the preparation of flour, and can be used as a catalyst for polyester thermoset resins (as an alternative to the much more hazardous methyl ethyl ketone peroxide.
The contents of this article is licensed from www.wikipedia.org under the GNU Free Documentation License. Click here to see the transparent copy and copyright details