Atoms are smallest particles of any substance which are composed of sub-atomic particles; electrons, protons and neutrons. It is smallest particle of an element which exhibits all the properties of that element like all atoms of Al show metallic nature and all the chemical and physical properties are same. Combination of more than one atom forms compounds such as water is formed by two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom therefore the formula of compound will be H2O. Some other examples of compounds are salt and sugar. In any compound, atoms lose their individual identity and show unique chemical and physical properties of compounds only. When two or more substances are mix together without formation of any chemical linkage between components, these are called as mixtures. For example; table salt in water or sugar in water are good examples of mixture. Elements and compounds are pure form of any substance whereas mixtures are composed of more than one substance. On the basis of physical state of components; mixtures can be classified as homogeneous and heterogeneous mixture.
Homogeneous mixtures have uniform distribution of all components of mixture. It is not possible to separate the components of such mixtures by physical methods. For example; mixture of salt is a homogeneous mixture. Such mixtures are commonly called as solutions. In heterogeneous mixture, both component form two different phases like sand in water or oil in water. Suspension and colloids are good examples of heterogeneous mixtures.
Colloidal mixtures are heterogeneous mixture in which the particles which are called as colloidal particles remain disperse in another substance that is called as dispersion medium. Here colloidal particles are larger than the particles of solution whereas these particles are smaller than suspension particles. So they are not visible by naked eyes but remain disperse in medium. The particle size varies between 10-9 m to 10-6 m in size.
Such solutions are also called as colloidal solution or colloidal dispersion. Here the dispersion medium and dispersed phase can be in any state. On that basis, colloidal solutions can be different types such as sol, emulsion, gel etc. So we can say that colloidal solutions are neither true solutions nor suspensions. On the basis of stability, colloid formation can be classified as reversible and irreversible system. Colloidal silver solution can be defined as the solution of pure water with silver particles of sizes same as colloidal particles.
It makes a colloidal suspension in which silver colloidal particles exist as silver ions. Usually in silver colloidal more than 90% silver ions are present in solution. Such solutions which contain only ions are called as ionic solutions. They are not colloidal solutions as no more particle remains dispersed in medium. If there is no ion only particle, it will be a pure colloid. In colloidal solutions, particles remain suspended in solution due to electrostatic mutual repulsion of the particles.
Colloidal sliver is a colloidal solution in which nano sized silver particles remain dispersed in colloidal base. Like other colloidal solutions, silver particles are smaller than true solutions and cannot be seen by naked eyes. Colloidal silver has many medical applications and also have some hazardous effects.
Colloidal silver can help to heal the body in different respects. The silver particles of colloidal silver can easily hold the oxygen molecule and involve in catalytic oxidation. The bonded oxygen atom can react with sulfhydral (H) groups of bacteria and viruses. Silver particles of colloidal silver can also bonded with bacterial cell membranes and produce respiration-blocking effect. These particles can also bond with bacterial DNA such as in Pseudomonas aeruginosa. The bonding between silver particles and DNA does not alter the H-bonding and nevertheless prevents the unwinding of DNA molecules.
Prolong use of silver preparations can cause argyria. It is a condition in which silver salts deposit on skin and also effects eyes, and internal organs. It can also turn the skin ashen-gray. Argyria was a common during the pre-antibiotic era as that time silver was a common ingredient in nasal drops. Colloidal silver is widely used therapies for common health issues like a sinus infection or a cold. Antibacterial properties of colloidal silver are used to control antibiotic-resistant superbugs. Colloidal silver stimulates to heal in the skin and other soft tissues. Certain colloidal silver are used for the treatment of burns, thrush and periodontitis. Colloidal silver is also used for pink eye and ear infections. Pink eye is a bacterial or viral infection in which the mucous membrane is inflamed that covers the eyeball. Colloidal silver is used for prompt action against highly infectious virus and bacteria.
Colloidal silver is a colloidal solution of silver particles in certain dispersion medium. Initially colloidal silver was used for several drug products but later due to hazardous effects now a days different colloidal silver products are now considered as misbranded. Despite these disadvantages of colloidal silver, people still buy it as a dietary supplement. It is also used for a wide range of ailments. Many infections caused by bacteria such as bubonic plague, tuberculosis, pneumonia, Lyme disease, parasites like ringworm and malaria and viruses like HIV/AIDS, warts, pneumonia, shingles are treated with the help of colloidal silver ointments. Several diseases like cradle cap, emphysema, bronchitis, impetigom and inflammation of the bladder, prostate and colon are treated with the help of colloidal silver.