Sodium hydroxide is used in many industries, mostly as a strong chemical base in the manufacture of pulp and paper, textiles, drinking water, soaps, and detergents and as a drain cleaner.
Dissolution of solid sodium hydroxide in water is a highly exothermic reaction in which a large amount of heat is liberated, posing a threat to safety through the possibility of splashing. The resulting solution is usually colourless and odorless with slippery feeling upon contact in common with other alkalis.
Drops of sodium hydroxide solutions can decompose proteins and lipids in skin, eyes or other living tissues and ester hydrolysis, which consequently causes chemical burns and may induce permanent blindness if it contacts eyes.
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