Difference between Disinfection and Sterilization | Disinfection vs Sterilization

Disinfection vs Sterilization

Difference between disinfection and sterilization: – Disinfection and sterilization are two processes that are used to eliminate microorganisms that can cause illness and damage to the health of people. However, both processes are different and should not be confused.

Difference between disinfection and sterilization

In case you have doubts about it, then we tell you what is the difference between disinfection and sterilization?

Sterilization
Sterilization ensures the elimination of any pathogen on a given surface. An element is said to be sterile when it is “completely free” from microorganisms. It is important to understand that you cannot absolutely determine that the sterilization of something is complete, but you can reduce both the probability that something is contaminated to the point of saying it is “sterilized.”

This process is maintained in specific environments where there is usually a high pressure or a constant high temperature. There are many ways to carry out sterilization; one of the best known for us is pasteurization and although there is also radiation, boiling; among other. Sterilization is especially important in hospitals, food processing industries, water bottling companies and healthcare products.

Disinfection
Disinfection is used in settings where sterilization is not possible. The surfaces of certain fragile items and our homes are disinfected by us, but not sterilized. Disinfection is a process that seeks to destroy microorganisms; especially disinfectant products are focused on eliminating those that can cause us diseases.

It can also be disinfected to inactivate or slow down the growth of microorganisms, not specifically to kill them. In terms of results, those achieved with disinfection are less radical than those achieved with the sterilization process. Some of the best known disinfectants are: ozone, alcohol, chlorine, hydrogen peroxide and iodine.

Key differences between disinfection and sterilization

  • Sterilization is aimed at destroying almost all microbial life, while disinfection refers to the process by which part of the microbial life is destroyed or the harmful effects of it are inhibited in humans.
  • Examples where disinfection is applied: when we wash the dishes, when we clean the toilet.
  • Examples in which sterilization is applied: in surgical instruments, in pasteurized milk.
  • Disinfectants do not kill spores, but with sterilization they can be eliminated.
  • The level of cleaning achieved with disinfection can be described as “adequate”, while the degree of cleaning achieved by sterilization can be said to be “extreme”.
  • Sterilization takes longer than disinfection.