Lidocaine vs Benzocaine

I burned my finger! :frowning:

I wanted to buy the most effective pain relief gel or ointment. But, according to the packages, some use lidocaine while others use benzocaine. Suppose one product has 2% benzocaine while another has 2% lidocaine. Which wins? What percentage of the loser would be needed to equal 2% of the winner?

Well I went with the lidocaine. I searched the web, there are varying opinions. I guess that there is no definative annswer to be had. The lidocaine does work well.

Aloe vera straight from the plant works better on burns than either of those.

Perderabo: If you react quickly enough, cold works even better.

Cool the burn until it no longer stings.
Remove the cold.
Replace the cold at the first sign the sting is returning.

The sting indicates tissue damage from enzymes released by damaged tissue. Cold slows the action/release/damage of these enzymes. However, too much cold (freezing) causes further damage.


Something else that, IME, works miraculously on burns is tea tree oil. Dab a bit on to the burn, and in just a few minutes, the pain is gone, and doesn’t come back.

At this point I regret mentioning my initial motivation. I’m aware that there’s a multitude of other options for burns. But the focus of my question is on lidocaine and benzocaine. I continue to wonder which is more potent.

Neither is more potent really. They are very similar in action, both blocking the sodium channels in the nerve receptors. Some people may find that they metabolize one or the other more quickly, which would mean than one might wear off faster. But for purposes of topical pain relief, they are equals.

I apologize for gettting off topic with my response. But I’m glad WhyNot answered your question, because I really didn’t have an answer for you.

No, not the case, dear. Aloe vera is reputed to have effects that promote skin healing. But it’s not an anaesthetic, and if you try one of the caine drugs, the difference is quite obvious.

I can only speak anecdotally; it works for me AND it makes the burn go away right away. Perhaps the others are anaesthetic, “dear”, but aloe vera makes the burn stop for me.

Apparently few people are interested in the lidocaine and benzocaine comparison. Since the thread is only being used to quarrel over other burn remedies, it really serves no purpose. I would appreciate it is a mod could close this thread. Aloe vera (and other burn remedy) proponents and opponents can open their own threads.

I doubt it matters really.

Lidocaine and benzocaine were equally efficient

I doubt anyone sells 2% benzocaine. It usually comes in 10% or 20% mixtures and is sold as a dental pain treatment.

I understand that many people are interested in using more natural approaches to maintaining their health - and it’s worth considering avoiding drugs when it’s reasonable to do so. Treating a minor burn with a caine drug is probably not necessary (though it’ll really help on a bad sunburn.) However, your “anecdotal” evidence is just that, and it’s entirely contrary to reality. Aloe feels cool and pleasant on your skin, but there is simply no comparing the sensation of an anaesthetic with something that’s merely pleasantly cool. I’m not sure if you were simply overeager to endorse your favorite home remedy, but I’m pretty sure you’ve never tried a topical burn treatment; either way, what you said was ridiculous.

(Incidentally, does anyone know if any actual studies exist to examine aloe vera and healing burns?)

But look what else that link says:

5% lidocaine = 20% benzocaine

I don’t think that makes them equal, but if you do, well that’s ok with me. This is the type of data I was hoping for when I asked the question! Thanks!
And I see that the aloe vera proponents/opponents will not go away. :wally So I repeat my plea:

MODS: please close this thread!

Perderabo. I agree with your analysis of that link. So now your original question which proposed a test between 2% lidocacaine and 2% benzocaine is answered. It obviously take more benzocaine to produce the same effect.

I’ll close the thread, but if any poster disagrees with our analysis, and can offer proof, I’ll reopen it. Just email me.

samclem GQ moderator.

And, to the aloe vera proponents, TRY to answer the OP without bring up tangential points. Please.