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What is Forced Cone Pepper Spray? This is a variation on the popular cone type and is the best in most situations. It is a fine mist that comes out in a forceful spray pattern usually at distances from 8 to 12 feet. In the latest generation of dispensing actuators, the mist is made up of super-fine droplets of pepper solution. These droplets help to minimize blow-back of pepper spray formula on you while the mist (looks like a heavy fog) penetrates the attacker's skin pores and mucous membranes for an experience they will not soon forget!. This pattern actually spreads out to a width of approximately 2 feet at its maximum distance. This pattern covers the whole face and is absorbed into the mucus membrane with hot pepper causing the eyes to seal with tears, nose to run, excessive coughing, shortness of breath, etc.
What is Broken-Stream Pepper Spray? Very effective at hitting multiple attackers, or in tight areas, e.g., through your partially opened car window, and helps with aim. The solid stream (similar to the water guns sold today) will blast an attacker with super-hot pepper! The stream provides the heaviest blast of pepper spray (cans will empty faster).
Is there an antidote for pepper spray? No one has a quick and 100% effective neutralizing agent for Capsaicin, the chemical agent in peppers. Milk, baking soda paste and honey do a good job removing the sting from the fingers and face, but trace amounts of Capsaicin will remain on the fingers even after dozens of hand washings. Ultimately you will need to wait for the skin to slough off the microbes of Capsaicin.
Are there health risks for Asthmatics? For the reason of additional risk to asthmatics, such people who wish to carry tear gas for self defense but worry about possible wind-blowback may wish to consider a formulation which does not contain oleoresin capsicum, or at least a foam type pepper spray which reduces the risk from airborne particles of the agent. This risk of a bad reaction, however, is not going to be reduced for the user of a foam in a situation where an assailant takes the weapon away and uses it against the victim. Also, the possibility of this reaction emphasizes the importance of using pepper spray only in defense of people, not property.
What is Fogger Pepper Spray? This type of spray pattern is great for multiple attackers, crowd control, bears and home use. One disadvantage is there can be some blow-back of pepper contaminating you, especially if used outdoors. However, the blast you would receive and the direct blast the attacker receives are quite different. Where you would tear and cough on a good sized blow-back, the attacker would be rendered incapacitated for about 30 minutes. You pull the trigger or release button, and "fan" your path back and forth hitting everything in its path. Picture a mini fire extinguisher! The pepper spray works instantly. Causes the eyes to seal with tears, nose to run, excessive coughing, shortness of breath, etc.
Is there a best way to wash off pepper spray? Fresh air helps, and washing twice with soap is recommended. Try not to rub! Don't use a soap that contains a lot of oils, and don't apply oily lotions--they will carry tear gas particles deeper into your skin and prolong your discomfort. Remove any contact lenses if you get tear gas into your eyes--but not with fingers that have additional tear gas contamination. Don't touch your face before washing your hands after contacting tear gas. Remove any contaminated clothing, as you may recontaminate yourself from them.
What is Foam Pepper Spray? This type is excellent for blow-back protection and immediate saturation. EXAMPLE: If it is windy, you can spray this with minimum to no pepper blow-back contaminating you. A common misconception is that the attacker, once sprayed with the foam can just wiped it away and continue to attack. This Pepper Spray Foam is like thick, sticky saving cream but with one addition... 5.3 million Scoville Heat Units of blistering hot pepper. He will try to wipe it off but it will be to late. The pepper works instantly. Causes the eyes to seal with tears, nose to run, excessive coughing, shortness of breath, etc.
Are ther other Self-defense Chemical Sprays? CN, which is an abbreviation for chloroacetophenone was used by the military and police departments in the 60s and 70s but is not used much anymore. These products are not really gases but rather crystals suspend in a liquid placed under pressure to create a vapor. The tear gas products such as the original MACE have proven to be less effective against violent attackers, especially those under the influence of narcotics and alcohol. Additionally, the tear gas products have a fairly long reaction time of three to thirty seconds. CS is short for orthochlorobenzalmalononitrile. It is a micro-pulverized irritant. It irritates the mucous membrane of the nose, throat, eyes, and the skin in high concentrations. It works better than CN but not readily available to the public. Both of these pepper spray ingredients can be toxic and cause serious vomiting, and choking. CN and CS are not all that effective against animals.
What is Mace? All of Mace's products now are either straight OC Pepper Spray and /or OC /Tear gas combinations or foam. Don't get Mace confused with Pepper Spray. MACE (the actual chemical compound) has not been used for 15 years. Mace is an irritant that is very similar to tear gas. Unlike pepper spray Mace will NOT cause inflammation of the capillaries causing temporary blindness, nausea, cut off all but life support breathing and create a very strong burning or stinging sensation. It is important to note that Mace is also a brand name. Mace pepper spray is a 10% solution in a nationally reknowned brand name. Oleoresin Capsicum or OC is a naturally occurring substance derived from cayenne peppers. This not the same as the original Mace product.
|Jennifer Mathes, Ph.D.|