What you need to know about pepper spray

OC is short for Oleoresin Capsicum. OC is the extracted oil of the dried ripe fruits of the genus flowering plant capsicum. We know and eat the fruits of this plant, which are peppers. Most commonly, the red, green and chili peppers. Once extracted with an organic solvent and that solvent evaporates, the remaining wax-like resin becomes Oleoresin Capsicum. (OC). OC contains a complex mixture of highly potent organic compounds, which once a stabilizer like propylene glycol is used to suspend the OC in water, the OC then becomes pressurized and that is when canisters of pepper spray can be created.

What are the effects of pepper spray?

Eyes: Immediate and involuntary eye closure from intense burning and temporary blindness.
Respiratory:  Hyperventilation, swelling of mucous membranes of eyes, nose and throat, shortness of breath, nasal and sinus discharge and uncontrollable coughing.
Skin: Intense, temporary debilitating burning sensation.

All effects are immediate but temporary, and will usually completely dissipate within 45 minutes.

What should you do if you come in contact with pepper spray?
If you come into contact with pepper spray, flush your face and eyes with cold water. Try to separate your eyelids with your fingers. DO NOT rub your eyes. Flushing with water for ten minutes should relieve eye inflammation if it doesn’t continue until eye inflammation is relieved. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, mouth, groin and other sensitive areas until you are able to wash your hands thoroughly. Subjects wearing contact lenses should remove them before flushing their eyes. Contaminated glasses or hard lenses can later be cleaned with soap and water; however, any soft lens must be discarded. Follow the same procedure to relieve skin inflammation. Dawn dish soap is known to break down the pepper spray oils.