Benzocaine is one of the local anesthetics commonly used as numbing medications. It blocks nerve signals of your body and therefore, the body (the mind, in particular) can’t feel pain and discomfort. Benzocaine is mainly used to reduce pain caused by body conditions such as sunburns, sore throat, skin irritation, vaginal irritation, hemorrhoids and ingrown toenails.
Benzocaine is also used as a numbing agent to numb the skin inside body parts like throat, nose and mouth to lessen the pain during a treatment procedure.
Benzocaine Topical – Use and Application
Every time you use Benzocaine, follow the directions given by the doctor or instructions given on the label. Make sure you don’t use extra large or small amounts than what is prescribed.
For instance, if you use too much of Benzocaine, your body may absorb a bit extra medication and cause damage. It is equally harmful to apply it over large skin areas and tightly cover the area with bandages or plastic wraps.
Make sure you don’t apply this medication on skin areas with cuts and scratches, for they absorb more topical medication as compared to normal and healthy skin. If you are treating hemorrhoids, clean the affected area with soap and water before you apply Benzocaine topical. You will need to apply the medication up to 6 times a day for maximum benefit.
How Much Concentration is Fine?
Benzocaine comes with special instructions for safe and effective application. Use only as much amount of Benzocaine as needed to numb the skin or reduce pain. Avoid using extra amounts of this medicine and never cover treated skin areas tightly with a plastic wrap or bandage without instruction.
If it is a minor skin condition you are treating, apply a very thin layer of Benzocaine topical to the affected area. Apply it four times a day and if you are using the spray, hold the container at a safe distance from your skin. Spray it on your hands first and apply on other body parts including face.
Benzocaine Topical – Side Effects
There are certain things you need to keep in mind while using Benzocaine topical. For example, it can cause a life-threatening condition when used in mouth and throat. The amount of oxygen in your blood stream becomes dangerously low and the condition is called Methemoglobinemia.
Normally this condition occurs after several uses, but in some cases, this condition may come around even if you’ve used the numbing medication just once. Major symptoms take a few minutes to 2 hours to show up; emergency medical help should be sought out in such cases.
Signs and Symptoms
Most prominent symptoms of side effects of Benzocaine are fast heart rate, headache and confusion.
The patient feels extremely tired, light-headed and short of breath. The skin turns gray, pale and blue and the same is the case with lips and fingernails.
One should get emergency medical help when these signs are observed. It is wise to stop using Benzocaine topical at once and speak to a doctor immediately. If a patient doesn’t get medical treatment on time, the following symptoms may occur, which of course, are very serious:
- Weakness, headache, dizziness and difficulty in breathing. The heart rate becomes faster and the skin turns gray or bluish.
- There’s a constant feeling of severe burning/stinging and the skin area where medicine is applied becomes highly sensitive.
- There may be redness, warmth and swelling on the skin. The signs of infections become clear on the skin followed by blistering and oozing.