Maharashtra State BoardHSC Science (General) 11th
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Explain with an example of Antiseptics. - Chemistry

Answer in Brief

Explain with an example of Antiseptics.

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  1. Antiseptics are used to sterilise surfaces of living tissue when the risk of infection is very high, such as during surgery or on wounds.
  2. Commonly used antiseptics include inorganics like iodine and boric acid or organics like iodoform and some phenolic compounds.


  1. Tincture of iodine (2-3% solution of iodine in an alcohol-water mixture) and iodoform serve as powerful antiseptics and is used to apply on wounds.
  2. A dilute aqueous solution of boric acid is a weak antiseptic used for eyes.
  3. Various phenols are used as antiseptics. A dilute aqueous solution of phenol (carbolic acid) is used as antiseptic; however, phenol is found to be corrosive in nature. Many chloro derivatives of phenols are more potent antiseptics than the phenol itself. They can be used with much lower concentrations, which reduce their corrosive effects.
  4. Two of the most common phenol derivatives in use are trichlorophenol (TCP) and chloroxylenol (which is an active ingredient of antiseptic dettol).
  5. Thymol obtained from oil of thyme (a spice plant) has excellent non-toxic antiseptic properties.
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Balbharati Chemistry 11th Standard Maharashtra State Board
Chapter 16 Chemistry in Everyday Life
Exercises | Q 7. (A) | Page 270
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