Battery Acid on Skin | What To Do

Learn From Doctor Team
Learn From Doctor Team is made up of well-qualified doctors of different fields with brilliant academic results and professional careers. The article is written and reviewed by doctors of this specialty.

Battery Acid on Skin

We use big batteries for our cars, toys, and household but forget so often that it’s filled with corrosive chemicals aka acids. Battery acid on skin or hand is a very common incident. It’s common but dangerous and needs immediate attention. Today we’ll discuss this.

Liquid battery acid will leak out when a battery is damaged, putting you at risk. To avoid severe chemical burns, battery acid on your skin should be treated as soon as possible. The type of battery affects how you handle battery acid on your hand.


Types of Battery Acids

Different types of battery acid are being used in batteries, they affect our skin differently on a different danger scale.

Let’s first know about each type of acid used in the battery. If you are in a hurry or in emergency circumstances, feel free to jump into any section of this content by using the table of content.

Whenever any corrosive chemicals come into contact with your skin, it creates chemical burns. Unlike thermal burns caused by fire or heat, battery burns will melt your skin quickly.

Batteries For Everyday Use

Alkaline batteries are often used in household appliances. As these batteries corrode, potassium hydroxide(KOH) leaks out. While this liquid can cause chemical burns, it can be neutralized and cleaned up safely.

Batteries For Vehicles

Car batteries are usually lead-acid batteries that contain sulfuric acid. A lead battery’s sulfur is extremely corrosive. Sulfur in battery acid is not diluted enough to be suitable for the skin, and it is often used topically to treat acne and other skin conditions.

Skin contact with the acid from a lead battery may be a medical emergency that necessitates urgent medical treatment.

Read Mosquito Bite on Eyelid

Primary Treatment For Battery Acid On Skin

In The Case Of Alkaline Battery

  1. Flush the area with moderately hot water for 30-45 minutes.
  2. Remove clothing, jewelry, or any substance from the affected area.
  3. Wait for signs to show. Continue to rinse with a stream of clean water and contact your doctor if you still experience a burning sensation or pain on your skin after 20 to 30 minutes.

In The Case Of Sulfuric Battery Acid On the skin

  1. In this case, rinsing the affected area with warm water will make the pain and condition far worse.
  2. Follow the above instructions but use warm water and soap to remove the acids from your skin.
  3. Don’t use your hand to remove acids, use a wet soft cloth.
  4. Even if your affected area hurts like hell still keep washing the acid.

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Complications may arise from Battery acid on your skin

Chemical Burns

Chemical burns occur when a corrosive material comes into contact with the skin, eyes, mouth, or internal organs. Caustic burns are another name for them.

Types of chemical burns

First-degree burn

Only the epidermis, or outer layer of skin, is affected by superficial or first-degree burns. While the area may be red and sore, there is typically no long-term damage.

Second-degree burn

Second-degree burns, also known as partial-thickness burns, penetrate into the dermis, the second layer of skin. It can cause blisters and swelling, as well as scarring.

Third-degree burn

Full-thickness or third-degree burns penetrate the skin, causing tissue damage underneath. It’s possible that the affected region appears black or white. You do not feel pain because your nerves have been fried.

Sign and symptoms for the chemical burn on the skin

  • At the point of contact, there can be redness, swelling, or burning.
  • Numbness or pain at the point of touch
  • Blisters or black scar tissue formation at the contact site
  • If the chemical reaches your eyes, your vision will change.
  • Shortness of breath or cough

Primary Treatment for the chemical burn on the skin

  • Remove the victim from the accident area
  • Remove all clothing and jewelry from the affected skin area
  • Flush the affected area with light warm water and soap(in case of sulfuric acid), wash the area with water for 30-40 minute
  • If the chemical reaches your eye then step into the shower and try to get as much as water possible into the eye to dilute the acid and reduce the effect.

Contact Dermatitis

A red, itchy rash caused by direct contact with a chemical or an allergic reaction to it is known as contact dermatitis. Although the rash isn’t contagious or life-threatening, it can be very painful.

Soaps, cosmetics, fragrances, jewelry, and plants are only a few examples of things that can cause allergic reactions.

To effectively treat contact dermatitis, you must first locate and avoid the source of your reaction. The rash usually resolves in two to four weeks if the offending agent is avoided. Cold, wet compresses, anti-itch creams, and other self-care measures can help soothe your skin.

Signs and Symptoms

Contact dermatitis typically develops on parts of the body that have been specifically exposed to the material that causes the reaction, such as along a calf that has come into contact with poison ivy or under a watchband. The rash occurs minutes to hours after exposure and can last for two to four weeks.

The sign and symptoms of typical contact dermatitis

  • A rash that is bright red.
  • Itching that can be very serious
  • Skin that is dry, cracked, and scaly
  • Bumps and blisters, with oozing and crusting on occasion
  • Tenderness, swelling, or burning

When to see a doctor?

Consult your doctor if you experience any of the following symptoms:

  • You’re losing sleep or being distracted from your everyday tasks because of the rash.
  • The rash appears suddenly, is painful, and is either serious or widespread.
  • You’re self-conscious about your skin’s appearance.
  • Within three weeks, the rash has not healed.
  • The rash appears on your face or on your genitals.
  • The rash appears on your face or on your genitals.

Emergency Situations

  • Your skin seems to be tainted. Fever and pus oozing from blisters are two red flags.
  • Perhaps as a result of inhaling an allergen, the lungs, skin, or nasal passages are painful and inflamed.
  • You believe the rash has weakened your mouth and digestive tract mucous lining.

Contact dermatitis complications

If you scratch the infected area repeatedly, causing it to become damp and oozing, contact dermatitis may lead to infection. This provides an ideal environment for bacteria or fungi to multiply, potentially leading to infection.


Eye Damages

A chemical eye burn may occur when a chemical is introduced to any part of the eye or eyelid. Chemical burns account for 7% to 10% of all eye injuries. At least one eye is burned in 15 percent to 20 percent of facial burns. Despite the fact that many burns cause only mild irritation, any chemical damage or burn should be considered carefully. It is possible to sustain permanent injury, which can cause blindness and life threat.

The intensity of a burn is determined by the material that caused it, how long it was in contact with the eye, and how it was handled. The cornea (the transparent front surface of the eye responsible for better eyesight, which is most often impacted), the conjunctiva (the layer covering the white portion of the eye), and sometimes the internal eye tissues of the eye, including the lens, are typically the only areas of the eye that are impaired. The most serious burns are those that go deeper than the cornea, causing cataracts and glaucoma.

Symptoms of Chemical Eye Burn

A total loss of vision suggests a significant burn. Glaucoma, or a rise in intraocular pressure, can develop, but it can take hours or days to manifest.

The following are early signs and symptoms of a chemical eye burn

  • Redness of the pain
  • irritability
  • tearing
  • unable to keep one’s eye open
  • In the eye, there is a sensation of something.
  • Eyelid swelling is a condition that occurs when the eyelids become swollen.
  • Vision is hazy

Chemical eye burns primary treatment at home

If you have a chemical injury, the first thing you can do is irrigate the eye completely right away. Unique eye irrigating solutions should be used if possible, but if none are appropriate, tap water will suffice.

  • Before doing something else, start wiping your eyes and keep doing so for at least 20-30 minutes. The more time a chemical spends in your eye, the more harm it does. It is important to dilute the material and wash away any particles that may have been present in the chemical.
  • In an ideal world, you’d be put in an emergency eyewash or shower station at work and your eye would be washed with sterile isotonic saline solution. Use cold tap water instead of sterile saline if sterile saline isn’t available.
  • If you’re at home and don’t have any special eyewash, wash your eyes in the shower while still wearing your clothes.
  • Open your eyelids as wide as possible as you rinse them out, even though it’s painful.
  • If you’ve been burned by an alkali (e.g., drain cleaner) or hydrofluoric acid, keep cleaning before a doctor arrives or you’ve been taken to a hospital’s emergency room.

Respiratory irritation

When you are exposed to sulfuric acid, you can experience trouble breathing and chest tightness. Inhaling battery acid fumes of any kind can be poisonous and cause dizziness or vomiting.

As you treat the respiratory discomfort caused by battery acid fumes, it’s important to limit your exposure.

How to dispose of battery and battery acids

Battery acid on skin


Put on protective gloves when picking up an alkaline battery that is leaking. Before disposing of the battery, place it in a plastic container and seal it.

To neutralize the acid and wipe it off any electrical surfaces, use a cotton swab soaked in vinegar. Household alkaline batteries can be disposed of safely in daily garbage.

Lead and lithium

Whether or not they are leaking, lithium and lead batteries must be disposed of as toxic waste. You should call ahead and inquire about the preferred form of battery disposal at your nearest household waste center.

Lithium batteries are commonly disposed of at laptop and mobile phone shops. When you get a new car battery, the mechanic will almost certainly dispose of the old lead battery for you.


Few Last Words about battery acid on skin

Itching, discomfort, redness, and burning are all symptoms of battery acid on the skin.

Household batteries are usually alkaline, and the “acid” inside is less caustic than lead batteries, but any battery exposure should be handled right away.

Where necessary, avoid contact with battery acid by getting rid of old batteries and following best practices for disposal.

In any emergency health situation including battery acid on the skin or hand please consider the primary treatment and Call 911 while doing it. Every acid accident is an emergency and needs serious medical attention.

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Last Updated on February 23, 2022 by Learn From Doctor Team

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