- An astringent (occasional alternative: adstringent) substance is a chemical compound that tends to shrink or
constrict body tissues and precipitate the protein and astringent form protective layer on the surface.
- Due to their protein action, astringents are able to reduce the cell permeability.
- This reduces local edema, exudation and inflammation.
- The word "astringent" derives from Latin “adstringere”, meaning "to bind fast".
- They are usually applied to damaged skin topically or to the mucous membrane of GIT including the mouth. Characteristics:
- Affect only the superficial layer. Reduce cellular permeability.
- Make the surface mechanically strong, decrease exudation.
- Protect from external irritation.
- Possess local styptic and local antiseptic action.
- May interfere with the function of pain receptors. The pain relieving action is mild.
- Constrict the blood vessels to stop bleeding.