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Hydrogen Peroxide

Last updated: May 27, 2017

What Does Hydrogen Peroxide Mean?

Hydrogen peroxide is a colorless liquid with a slightly sharp odor. It is unstable and flammable when heated, and it also poses an explosion risk. Hydrogen peroxide is present at very low levels in air, water, human and plant tissues, bacteria, and some food and drinks.

The CAS number for hydrogen peroxide is 7722-84-1.

Safeopedia Explains Hydrogen Peroxide

Hydrogen peroxide is a common oxidizing and bleaching agent that is also found in deodorants, water and sewage treatment, and rocket fuel. At low concentrations, hydrogen peroxide is also used in hair-bleaching agents.

The effects of exposure to hydrogen peroxide are wide ranging. It may cause irritation to the nose, throat, and respiratory tract, accumulation of fluid in the lungs (which can potentially be fatal), and even blindness. Hydrogen peroxide is toxic at high concentrations regardless of the route of exposure. It may also cause genetic mutations.

According to OSHA, the legal airborne permissible exposure limit (PEL) for hydrogen peroxide is 1 ppm averaged over an eight-hour work shift.


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