Trace: gloves

PEN wiki


Latex Gloves

These are worthless to the chemist, detrimental in fact because they make the hands less agile and give the user a false sense of security. Concentrated acids will burn through latex. Organic chemicals will pass straight through (and then through your skin) – without any obvious signs. One Shika author learned this when the skin on his hand started peeling off, under the latex glove. The only reasons to wear latex gloves is if one has open cuts on the hands and has no choice but to perform the practical (e.g. national exams), or if one needs to perform first aid. If for these reasons you want some of these gloves, pharmacies sell boxes of one hundred. Do not waste money on the individually wrapped sterile gloves. The biology teacher may want to wear gloves for handling specimens. Latex are appropriate for this. Human skin is also relatively impervious if it is free of cuts. Just wash well with soap and water after handling specimens.

Thick Gloves

Thick rubber gloves that withstand exposure more corrosive chemicals are sold by village industry supply companies, and some hardware stores. These gloves will withstand concentrated acids for long enough to protect your hands. They 28 will, however, inevitably make you more clumsy, and more likely to splash acid or drop the bottle. Given that splashed acid and especially a broken bottle are much worse than some burned skin on the hand, using these gloves for concentrated acids is not recommended. Have weak base solution available for treating burns immediately and work carefully. Thick gloves are recommended for when working with organic solvents. Re- member that the most dangerous organic solvents (benzene, carbon tetrachlo- ride) should never be used in a school, with or without gloves. Also remember that students will probably not have these gloves, so do not give them any chem- icals that you would not use without the gloves. If you need to measure out one hundred samples of ether, for example, wear gloves because this task presents a much more significant exposure risk than an individual student handling her sample. If you are demonstrating technique for the students, however, do not wear gloves, unless you expect all of your students to wear them for the same process. In general, avoid using chemicals that would make you want to wear gloves.

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