In the medical lubricant industry, there are many different varieties of products to choose from, each serving their purpose. The procedure you are performing and with what instruments will often dictate which lubricant you select. Join us in today’s post as we offer just three reasons to use water-soluble lubricants for all of your medical lubricant needs.
At HR Pharmaceuticals, we create lubricants like Surgilube® Surgical Lubricant, which has been trusted by the medical community for more than 80 years. This water-soluble lubricating jelly offers a variety of benefits including low-allergy, non-staining, and high viscosity, just to name a few.
Before we jump right into the benefits of water-soluble lubricants, let’s take a minute to explore what that means and the other options available. Water-soluble lubricants are those that are, well, soluble in water! These are lubricants that are water-based, without the use of oil, silicone, or grease to offer additional lubrication. Silicone or oil-based lubricants, however, use silicone or other oils to provide a slickness to the lubricant. The difference can be felt in texture. Oil-based lubricants are useful in applications in a wet environment that would affect the water solubility of a water-based lubricant and in environments where water may cause corrosion.
The Benefits of Water Soluble Lubricants
Water-soluble lubricants mimic natural body fluids.
In a personal or medical setting, water-based lubricants serve the purpose of reducing friction and improving viscosity during invasive procedures. Water-based lubricants like Surgilube mimic the natural body fluids including mucus, saliva, and vaginal discharge. Because it mimics the body’s natural fluids, it is non-irritating and causes very little reactions. Additionally, it works with your body’s natural fluids to create a more comfortable environment.
Another bonus to mimicking the body’s natural fluids is in terms of sperm viability. Water-based lubricants won’t damage or slow sperm down, so it is the preferred lubricant for fertility purposes — for both clinical and personal use.
Water-soluble lubricants won’t damage instruments.
Oil-based lubricants, while they can provide a slicker surface for instruments, also tend to damage them. Oil-based lubricants are especially reactive to silicone or rubber products. Water-based lubricants, on the other hand, will not damage instruments of plastic, rubber, silicone, or metal. This quality makes water-soluble lubricants the only viable option for procedures such as nasogastric tube placement or Foley catheter insertion. Because most medical gloves include silicone or rubber, any procedure where the lubricant will come in contact with the gloves, should be water-soluble. Additionally, for personal use with condoms or adult toys made of silicone or rubber, water-soluble lubricants are the only safe lubricants to use.
Water-soluble lubricants are easy to clean up and non-staining.
Arguably, one of the best reasons to use water-soluble lubricants over oil-based lubricants is the cleanup. Because water-soluble lubricants contain mostly water, they are easy to wipe away and clean up, and they don’t leave greasy residue or oil stains behind. Oil-based lubricants destroy paper, fabric, and even hard surfaces and can be difficult to completely remove. When oil-based lubricants must be used, diligent care should be taken to avoid spills or overuse that will result in unsightly stains and difficult to clean areas. When oil-based lubricants are used, they should be thoroughly rinsed away afterward.
Some other great honorable mentions that didn’t quite make the top-three list of the benefits of using water-soluble lubricating jelly include:
- They are non-damaging to sperm and cultures
- They are low-allergen and safe for use on nearly every patient
- They provide a less friendly environment for microbe growth
- It is safe to ingest
- It won’t dry or flake
- It won’t become sticky or tacky
When you are looking for a water-soluble medical lubricant that you can use in your clinic, trust the brand that has been the go-to lubricant for obstetricians and gynecologists for nearly 85 years — Surgilube Surgical Lubricant. Other great qualities of Surgilube include its bacteriostatic properties and it is paraben, glycol, and additive-free.