A Deconstruction of Colloidal Silver:
The health benefits of silver are widely known, as it has been in use over the centuries as the best known natural antimicrobial agent and an effective disinfectant. Over such a large span of time, pure silver has found uses in a range of functions, from purifying water to treating several illnesses.
Colloidal silver refers to the suspension of microscopic silver particles in a liquid, leading to what is known as a ‘colloid’. There has been records in history which has stated the use of silver in the colloidal form as an internal medicine to treat several diseases. The credibility of silver in disease treatment was also vouched for by Hippocrates, the father of medicine. It is one of the few heavy metals that are not toxic to man. The wide range of uses that it spans has resulted in extensive usage of silver in different forms for different purposes.
The silver ions have the oligodynamic property which is responsible for their antiseptic nature, killing bacteria, fungi, viruses and pathogens. The mechanism of action is that the silver ions serve to disrupt those enzymes that are essential in carrying out vital processes in the micro-organism, thereby killing it.
Since centuries, colloidal silver has been one popularly used form of silver to treat many disease conditions. The colloidal silver products are liquid suspensions of silver particles in different concentrations, and some manufacturers bind these particles to some proteins too, in the formulations. The formulations of silver in colloidal form in various concentrations has been used to treat many infectious conditions like yeast infections and bacterial infections like eczema, allergies, etc.
There has been a lot of debate fuelled about the credibility of the usage of colloidal silver as a disease treating agent in the recent times. There has been scare-mongering with the risk of developing side-effects like argyria, which is a condition of excessive silver accumulation in the body, systemic or local, leading to a grayish tinge. However these side effects are well-known to be the result of poor home-made Colloidal Silver.
However, like any substance that has the potential for healing has a tendency to breed ill-effects in over or under-usage, colloidal silver too, in optimal and monitored usage shows health benefits and adverse effects when used indiscriminately.
There are several silver formulations in colloidal form available in the market of alternative medicine, offering antiseptic properties and additional health benefits. Formulations have been carefully manufactured to avoid any chance of occurrence of side effects like argyria, by including low concentration colloids of silver and producing an effective concentration that is non-toxic on the human body. The products are used for anti-microbial purposes to enhance health by the way of anti bacterial effects that silver effects.
There are products that are manufactured with highest level of standards, incorporating the smallest silver particles that are nano-sized, purest in form with highest bio-availability due to small particle size and increased surface area of particle absorption and highly non-toxic due to formulation with highest quality de-ionized water, and also without the side effects of argyria which is generally caused by colloidal silver particles bound to proteins. Though antibiotics are available today, which are widely used to treat microbial infection, the long-standing usage of colloidal silver in microbial infection treatment is not refuted. There have been unscrupulous instances occurring even in this field, just as in every other real of marketing and business, particularly those related to healthcare products.
Caution has to be exercised while discerning the credibility of the claims and the products manufactured by various dealers, with reliability laced only on credible products offering reasonable benefits and not those dubious claims made by the unscrupulous dealers. Colloidal silver, nevertheless, is a health realm that has been exploited over the years and still finds credible usage in various parts of the world.