Of the 3 basic chemical compounds used in self-defense sprays, there is one that is the most effective and newest, which is what I am going to expand on in this article.
The natural chemical compound used in defense sprays is called Oleoresin Capsicum, or OC. It is not an irritant to the skin as the other 2 man-made chemical compounds are.
The term “pepper spray” comes from the fact that Oleoresin Capsicum is made from hot pepper plant oils. “Oleoresin” is a term meaning a mix of a partly solid substance obtained from the sap of specific plants and trees. “Capsicum” is Latin for hot pepper plant fruit. OC is not harmful to the skin or damaging to any internal tissues, while the other 2 man-made chemical compounds may possibly be toxic and harmful to human tissue.
As an inflammatory agent, the cbd spray has an immediate effect upon contact with the assailant being sprayed. Temporary blindness is caused when the capillaries of the eyes dilate and the terrible burning sensation from the pepper spray will cause uncontrollable clamping shut of the eyes. Immediate inflammation of the lungs and throat will cause the assailant to fall to his knees in a gasping attempt to inhale more air than his inflamed breathing tissues will allow. He will only be able to get enough oxygen to keep from passing out and may also experience nausea and vomiting.
These conditions are only temporary, but very crushing to the person sprayed, giving the victim enough time to escape. The effects of the OC pepper spray take about 20 to 45 minutes to wear off and the assailant makes a complete recovery, hopefully in jail.
The other 2 chemical compound defense sprays will not have a stopping effect on someone who is high on drugs or in an intense high adrenalin state of some forms of psychosis, nor will it have a stopping power against an animal attack. OC pepper spray IS effective in all of these situations.
OC Pepper sprays come in stream, cone and fog emissions.
1. The OC stream spray has a shooting range of approximately 15 to 20 feet. It is less likely to be blown back into the face of the one dispensing the spray. If the user makes a direct hit into the face of the assailant, the pepper spray will break up into tiny droplets, stopping the attacker and dropping him to his knees from the inflammatory effects. The negative aspect of this stream type pepper spray is that it doesn’t release the OC as successfully as the cone or fog mist.
2. The pepper spray with the wider spray pattern than the stream is the cone spray. It creates a mist barrier with it’s finer density and has more of an immediate stopping effect on the attacker than the stream. The mist barrier that the cone emits is effective against multiple assailants and gives the user time to escape. There are a couple of drawbacks to the cone spray, one being the fact that it is uncontrollable in a strong breeze so the user has to be aware of the need to escape the vicinity immediately after spraying. The other drawback is that the smaller canisters usually only have a range of 6 to 8 ft. The larger canisters that are 3 or 4 ounces may have a shooting range of 12 to 15 ft.
3. The fogger pepper spray unit releases a high pressure shot of a fine mist which is the most effective of the three types of sprays because any intake of breath quickly takes the mist to the lung tissue, swelling the mucous membranes and incapacitating the assailant. Even in a wind this mist works well and forms a barrier between the user and the assailant, giving enough time to escape. It works especially well on more than one assailant in still air because the mist will hang for several minutes. The spray range of 15 to 20 feet is also a factor in giving the user time to spray and escape. Unfortunately, the number of shots per unit is less than the stream or cone spray because of the large amount of chemical released with the spray and the high pressure of each unit.
Every pepper spray has it’s pros and cons, but the important thing to remember is that, used correctly, any of them can save your life. After purchasing a pepper spray, go through a scenario of an actual attack without actually releasing the spray. Get familiar with how to hold the spray for effectiveness, making sure the nozzle is pointed away from you, fake a spray and then turn and run. Although the spray will stop your assailant, NEVER hang around to see what happens. Spray and run like you’ve never run before. And call the police when you’re at a safe distance. Hopefully you will never need to use the pepper spray, but it is much better to have it and never use it than to need it and not have it.