Researchers at the University of Texas at Austin have developed strips containing benzocaine that can be used to relieve pain.
Eating or drinking hot foods and beverages, such as coffee, pizza, and soup, can sometimes lead to burns. Researchers from the University of Texas at Austin, led by Jason McConville, have developed a dissolvable oral strip that can immediately relieve this pain.
The strip was designed controlled delivery of the local anesthetic benzocaine (used in dental products and throat lozenges), and a therapeutic polymer. It can be applied directly to the burned part of the tongue, cheek, or roof of the mouth. It sticks to the affected area, quickly dissolving for instant pain relief and also promoting healing. McConville said:
We found these strips to be non-toxic, which has huge potential for anyone who burns their mouth while eating and drinking hot foods—and that’s just about everyone. The strips look and behave similar to breath freshening strips that you might find at your local drugstore.
McConville and his team next plan to conduct human tests, experiment with taste-making, and create a stronger oral strip to treat more severe burns lasting longer than 2-3 days.