Differences of methyl alcohol from ethyl

Poisoning methyl alcohol is a very dangerous disease that can lead to very serious consequences and even death. Methylmercury adversely affects the nervous system, heart, liver and other organs. In cases of poisoning they urgently need to provide proper health care, otherwise the person may die. Very important to be able to distinguish methyl from the ethyl as methyl alcohol cannot be taken orally.

The difference between the effects of methyl and ethyl alcohol on the body

Ethyl alcohol, or ethanol, is a depressant that is added to alcoholic beverages. Due to this they have an intoxicating effect. Ethyl alcohol – the medical and food, that is it in a small amount of safe for human health. However, prolonged use of alcohol-based ethanol is formed a dependence to it.

Ethanol is obtained by distillation of a solution undergoing fermentation. It turns out the alcohol of high concentration, but before use it must be diluted with water, otherwise it may burn the mouth and esophagus. It is possible to obtain a natural brew at home, using a special moonshine.

Homemade alcohol to taste no different from store bought. But with all the technology of its production quality, the resulting brew is very high. Therefore, many recommend cooking spirits on their own.

Methyl alcohol, or methanol, which is a monatomic substance that is a poison to the human body. It is extracted from formic acid, lignin and wood. It is used in industry as a solvent for paints. In addition, it is used in the production process of formaldehyde. Methanol is absorbed much slower than ethanol, so in the process of oxidation in the body, a series of highly toxic substances.

That is why the methanol depresses the nervous system, affects the retina. So people often go blind as a result of poor-quality alcohol. The use of methyl instead of ethyl alcohol can lead to serious poisoning. Even small doses lead to death.

How to distinguish methyl from ethyl

The fact that to distinguish methyl alcohol from ethyl quite problematic, since they have the same color, taste and smell. True, the ethanol scent is more pronounced in the methyl alcohol almost neutral. So if after you sniffed the liquid, it seems that the smell is unusual, better the alcohol drink. So you need to check the alcohol before drinking it. There are several ways to do it.

Method 1. The ignition of the liquid

This is the simplest method to determine the quality of alcoholic beverage. For this small amount of liquid poured into a saucer and set fire to the alcohol.

You can also take a cotton swab, wet it in alcohol and set on fire. While ethanol will burn with a blue flame, but methanol, a green.

Although you should be aware that the reaction only appears if methyl alcohol is clean, without any impurity additives.

Method 2. Use potatoes

To check the quality of alcohol you can with a potato. For this purpose one medium-sized potatoes peeled, and then pour the alcohol. The amount of alcohol should be such that it completely covered the surface of the vegetable. Potatoes will not affect the taste of the alcohol, so it can be used if it passes the test.

If after a few hours it didn't change color, therefore, was in food ethyl alcohol. Usually in methanol it becomes pink. In addition, the alcohol should not change the color. In natural alcohol starch from potatoes is not allocated, but methanol its particles fall into the liquid. As a result, it becomes cloudy.

Method 3. Heating

To determine which front you alcohol, it is necessary to boil the liquid. To do this, pour approximately 200 ml of alcohol in a bowl that can be heated, and put it on the fire. During the procedure, it is necessary to use a thermometer so as to measure the temperature starts boiling. For ethanol – 80 degrees, and for methyl alcohol – only 60.

Method 4. The reaction of potassium permanganate and soda

Potassium permanganate or potassium permanganate is oxidizing agent that does not affect food alcohol. So when it is added to the ethanol in the process of heating the mixture is not going to happen any reaction. But if it is methanol, the liquid starts to sizzle. This will be a strong smell of formalin. Because methanol is oxidized to formaldehyde and ethanol to acetaldehyde. Instead of potassium permanganate can be used for any other oxidizer.

To the liquid add the baking soda. Then the solution was stirred. Food spirit should appear insoluble yellow precipitate which occurs during the reaction of ethanol and iodine. But in methyl alcohol soda is completely dissolved and the liquid becomes transparent.

Method 5. Formaldehyde test

It is believed that the most reliable method to determine the methanol in the alcohol – formaldehyde sample. To accomplish it take a tiny copper wire and heat it on the fire. Then immersed in alcohol. Then it has to be smell: if you havea sharp odor of formalin to drink this drink it is impossible. Because the ethanol in reaction with a copper wire emits a scent of Apple cider vinegar.

Method 6. Sample Lang

To check the quality of alcohol consumed can have a so-called trial lang. Research can be conducted at home. To do this:

  • you must take 50 ml of alcohol and pour it into a container that can be heated.;
  • then 0.2 g of potassium permanganate diluted in 2 ml of distilled water.
  • the alcohol is heated to 18 degrees, and then poured into a solution of potassium permanganate. The resulting mixture should be well mixed.

Now need to measure the time during which the color of the mixture changed its color from purple to pink. The longer it will last, the higher the quality check of alcohol. Normal is such a result in discoloration of the alcohol lasted at least 10 minutes.

Most importantly, to buy alcoholic beverages only in checked places. Better to buy it in stores, not from the hands of the people. In this case, the risk of accidental consumption of methanol is reduced significantly. Usually, methyl alcohol is cheaper, although some sellers can pass it off as ethanol.

But be aware that such methods are effective only in the case if the alcohol contains a high concentration of methanol, more than half of the total volume. Therefore, if methyl alcohol a little or it contains impurities, to determine the presence of alcohol at home is almost impossible.

So no need to think that the above experiments allow 100% to be sure of the quality of the used product. Because alcoholic beverages pure ethanol masks the additive methanol. So if you have doubts about the quality and origin of alcoholic drink, it is better not to drink.

Pure methanol is a dangerous poison for humans. Only 50 grams leads to blindness. Lethal concentration of poisonous alcohol in the body is prepared above 100 grams. And even if the person stays alive, the vision to him unlikely to return.

Symptoms of poisoning by methanol and ethanol

Poisoning ethyl and methyl alcohol is symptoms of intoxication, as well as its flow. For example, in cases of poisoning with ethyl alcohol in a person hurts and you feel dizzy, sick, possible diarrhea or constipation. In addition, for some time, appears aversion to food. In this re-the use of alcoholic beverages is only possible a few days after intoxication, as the smell of alcohol causes a gag reflex. In the case of methanol poisoning the following symptoms:

  • headache is sharp and sudden, then goes, then comes again;
  • a person becomes hard to breathe, there is severe pain in the chest area;
  • he experiences malaise, weakness and lethargy;
  • there is a strong abdominal pain.

Specific sign of methanol poisoning is blurred vision. Objects appear indistinct and blurred. Appears photophobia, with dilated pupils.

Although the symptoms of intoxication with methyl and ethyl alcohol are similar, they differ in the degree of severity. In the first case, the poisoning is more serious and is very serious, leading to very serious consequences.

The first aid

Methyl alcohol is a very dangerous product for the human body. If for some reason people drank it, you need to urgently call a doctor. And while he will come, it is recommended to provide first aid to the patient:

  1. Immediately you need to clean the stomach. The benefit of poisonous methyl alcohol is slowly absorbed into the blood, and some time remains in the digestive tract. Therefore, if timely irrigation to avoid complications. For washing you need in a liter of warm water add several crystals of potassium permanganate to the obtained solution had a pink tint. It is necessary to drink, that should trigger a gag reflex.
  2. You also need to drink 50-100 ml of ethanol. Because of this poison will quickly excreted.
  3. If the poisoning is very acute, it is necessary to carry out hemodialysis. However, to perform the procedure at home is impossible, because you should wait for the medics.

Your doctor may order hospitalization of the patient or recommend treatment at home. Anyway, to defer therapy should not be, because death from ingestion of methyl alcohol may occur in a few hours.

After the methyl alcohol intoxication effects on humans can be extremely difficult. For example, there is a compartment syndrome. In this case people in a coma for some time, resulting in destroyed muscle tissue. In addition, impaired kidney function. Due to the coma appears cardiac and respiratory failure.

It must be remembered that even casual use of bromide can lead to serious complications. Therefore, you should not drink it consciously. It is from drinking low-quality vodka and often die alcohol addicts. Because a lethal dose of methanol for humans is only 100 ml.