Consider cleaning delicate surfaces, or take care of personal medical and grooming needs, with absorbent natural cotton balls and swabs. You can choose from loose cotton balls, which are ideal for personal use, and swabs on wooden or plastic stems that can reach between spaces in electronic equipment.
Cotton balls are essential for medical offices, dressing rooms and private homes. These soft, absorbent balls have long been a favorite for applying and removing makeup, dabbing on lotion and keeping nail polish away from cuticles. Though not sterile like antibacterial wipes , medical practitioners frequently use them to swab the skin with topical disinfectant and contain the bleeding after blood is drawn.
Swabs feature a small cotton head on a shaft made from wood or plastic. They may be single or double sided, and they have a variety of uses around the home, office and medical center. Dentists frequently use long single-sided swabs to apply anesthetic to patients' gums before a shot, and mothers often use double-sided swabs to gently clean their babies' ears. Swabs are also useful when dipped in cleansing agents, such as rubbing alcohol or hydrogen peroxide, and passed over electronic surfaces that can't easily be washed.
Oral swabs look a lot like cotton swabs, but they usually have a spongy head made from some synthetic material. When soaked in water, these swabs help keep patients hydrated during medical procedures. Surgical patients, and people whose medical condition makes drinking fluids difficult, often suffer from dry mouth. Oral swabs may be soaked and passed over the person's lips and gums to ease the uncomfortable dryness and chapping often caused by intubation or continuous use of an oxygen mask. Swabs may also be dipped in flavored solutions for rapid oral rehydration therapy, as well as in fruit juice or another treat for kids undergoing a procedure. They are also useful for gently cleaning the teeth and gums of people who may not be able to brush and floss normally.
Cotton pads are frequently used to supplement or replace cotton balls in general-purpose applications. Unlike balls, which are loosely woven and easy to crush, cotton pads are tightly woven into a flat panel that can absorb small to medium amounts of blood, water or other fluids. One of their major advantages is the ability to stack a lot of them in a small space, which makes them popular for use by ambulance crews and home-visiting nurses. They are also relatively easy to handle while wearing procedure gloves. Any number of pads may be used at once, with one or two standard to control where blood was drawn and several more added for larger bandages and major wounds. They’re also a flexible, easily handled patient care tool for applying or wiping away foundation, mascara or stray bits of eyeliner.
Disclaimer: The contents of this article are for informational purposes only and are based on scientific and technical research noted below. The information does not constitute a medical consultation and cannot replace medical advice. Any information should never be used as a substitute for the advice provided by your physician or other health care provider.