Can Beer Clean a Wound? Is It Antiseptic?

For many years, people wondered if they could use beer as an antiseptic. Even though beer is a natural brewing product from yeast, water, beer hops, and barley or oats, nobody could say that it could clean a wound effectively.

However, that depends on the type of wound and the quantity of bleeding. Beer that becomes a lot foamy when you drink it or has a lower alcohol concentration cannot be as good as pure alcohol as an antiseptic.

If you want to simply wash out a wound, and there is no clear water presence, beer is your next best solution.

Let’s elaborate more on this matter and analyze the beer qualities that make beer good or bad for cleaning a wound or even behaving like an antiseptic.

Beer Has a Low Alcoholic Concentration

As you already know, beer has a low alcoholic concentration. Most beers never exceed 5% to 10% alcohol concentration. That is something that makes them different from wines and hard spirits. To clean the wound, beer would have the same qualities as fresh water. However, you may have issues with salt inside the beer and the rest of the ingredients.

Salt could create a reaction with your serum bloodstream and make you have a funny itchy sense. That could be worse if your wound has a lot of bloodstreams inside, and there is no other way to stop it than clean the whole place.

Antiseptic Beer Abilities are Limited

In order to claim a substance is an antiseptic, it should stop the proliferation and multiplication of germs. That only happens when there is at least a 40% alcohol concentration within the antiseptic substance.

Popular antiseptics like pure alcoholic povidone or Betadine and Iodine have almost 70% concentration of alcohol in their substance.

For that reason, you may expect beer not to act as an efficient antiseptic substance. It’s not even close to that, and you could easily have the beer to clean the wound only in case of emergency and when no other means of cleaning is present and available.

Let’s talk about it in the next paragraph.

You Can Use Beer As Antiseptic Only When in Emergency

Suppose you are in a desert place where there is no pharmacy or convenience store close. Many times have we found ourselves wounded on the beach, and our only resources are a pack of beers from the local liquor store.

At this time, when you have an open wound that it’s bleeding, you could pour the beer on it and expect it to clean the wound from debris and other dirt that could be there. This usually happens when you have an impact with a solid object that could make your tissues tear down.

Beer is good for allowing you to see what is the ampleness of the wound, but it will irritate your skin and give you an itchy feeling, as mentioned above.

Beer Has Many Microorganisms Inside

On the other hand, beer could not be used as an antiseptic as it’s not sterile at all. Keep in mind that beer has some microorganisms inside, like yeast and others that can ferment the barley and oats to create alcohol.

However, it’s good to know that beer is primarily a water-based solution. For that reason, the lower alcohol concentration could be there to give you some mild antiseptic qualities, but it will never replace the supremacy of pure alcohol and Betadine for that specific use.

Yeast May Enter the Bloodstream Through the Wound

Another issue you may have with beer touching your bare wounds would be its entrance to the bloodstream. That is rare, but it’s a possibility you need to know it’s existent when you start using beer to clean your wounds.

Yeast is a fungus, and you could easily have an internal infection in case it enters and multiplies in your inner organs. Yeast infection is easy to deal with when it’s on the skin’s surface.

But when we are talking about years of infection to the inner organs, this could be devastating for your health and could lead to death.

Contamination From Beer Cans and Bottles Is Probable

There is always a chance to have of contamination from beer cans and bottles. All bottles and beer can have passed through a steaming process that removes the germs inside them.

However, when they receive the beer inside, their external surface is subject to germs contamination. For that reason, you can never say that beer is completely sterile since it can acquire some germs and bacteria stuck on the bottleneck and the exterior part of the cans.

That contamination could lead to infection in the wound with disastrous results.

It Would Be a Bad Idea to Use Beer as an Antiseptic

Finally, it is good to know that beer is tolerable to clean the wound, but it’s definitely a bad idea for antiseptic use. Beer, no matter cold or warm, can clean a wound and remove excessive blood clots and tissue debris.

However, that’s only an emergency solution when nothing else is available. Some people may think that consuming beer gives them antiseptic qualities to fight the germs that contaminate their bodies.

This is not true since beer can easily get absorbed by the stomach flora, and then the alcohol will be streamlined to the central nervous system and the liver. As a result, you can’t expect such antiseptic quality with beer products applied directly to the wound.

Final Words

Beer could give you an optimal buzz when you drink it. However, it’s a lousy antiseptic, and you should not prefer to use it against any other professional product.

Antiseptics contain alcohol in a greater concentration, and that’s why beer cannot give you the protection you would expect against contaminant agents like germs and bacteria.

Drinking beer is a lot better and gives you so much energy and joy. That’s why it’s better to drink it wisely to ensure that beer will improve your immune’s system natural defenses.



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