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Menthol facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts

Menthol is an organic compound. It is gotten from the oils of corn mint, peppermint, or other mints. It can also be made artificially. It is a waxy, crystalline substance. It is white in color. It is a solid at room temperature. It melts at a temperature that is a little bit higher than room temperature.

Menthol has local anaesthetic qualities, and reduces irritation of the throat.

Mentha arvensis is the main type of mint used to make natural menthol crystals. It is mainly grown in the Uttar Pradesh region in India.

Natural menthol is made by freezing peppermint oil and separating methanol from the frozen the peppermint oil by filtration.

Uses

It is used as an antipruritic to reduce itching. It is used to relieve muscle cramps, sprains and headaches. It is used in some medicines to treat sunburns. It is used as a pesticide against tracheal mites. In organic chemistry, menthol is used as a chiral auxiliary in asymmetric synthesis.

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