Sanitization vs Sterilization: Difference and Comparison

Keeping ourselves clean and our surrounding is very important. Before we start an operation in an operation theatre, we need many instruments to operate in the human body. We can’t simply use them without taking proper care.

Sterilization and Sanitization are the two most commonly sued methods by doctors to make sure they do everything properly without getting in contact with viruses and bacteria. 

Key Takeaways

  1. Sanitization refers to reducing the number of microorganisms to a safe level, whereas sterilization involves completely eliminating all microorganisms.
  2. Sanitization is used to clean surfaces and equipment in the food and medical industries, whereas sterilization kills all microbes on medical equipment or instruments before use.
  3. Sanitization is a milder process that does not require as much heat or pressure, while sterilization is a more intensive process that requires high heat, pressure, or chemicals.

Sanitization vs Sterilization

Sanitization is the process of reducing the number of germs and bacteria on a surface to a safe level. It involves using chemicals, such as disinfectants. Sterilization is the process of completely eliminating all forms of bacteria, viruses, etc., from a surface. It uses high heat or radiation.

Sanitization vs Sterilization

Sanitizing is a method used by people to keep them away from contact with harmful viruses and bacteria.

We are not sure when we will get in contact with water or when we will be able to wash our hands, so carrying a hand sanitiser with us is always important.

It is one method that is used by many people, and it helps us to make sure that we are in safe hands. 

Sterilization is mainly used for keeping the instruments that are used for operations to be safe. Because if they do not sterilize and used them, then viruses, bacteria, and microorganisms will stick to the instrument, and it will cause a serious threat.

It would be good if we even sterilize our baby items properly. They are also vulnerable to harmful things. 

Comparison Table

Parameters of ComparisonSanitizationSterilization
DefinitionThis method is used by people to sanitize their hands or their surroundingsThis is a method used by people to sterilize the instruments
ExampleSanitizing our surroundings using disinfectantSterilizing baby bottle using hot water
WorkingThis method will remove only microorganisms and bacteria to a certain levelThis method will completely remove the microorganism and bacteria
Best MethodBy using hand sanitizerBy using hot water

What is Sanitization?

Sanitization is the process of cleaning our hands and removing bacteria and dirt from them.

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We can’t be sure when we are near the water and when we are not, so it is better to carry sanitiser with us wherever we go so that we can sanitize our hands properly.

This method helps you to reduce the microorganism’s contact to a certain level so that you will feel safe.

Sanitizing is not just cleaning our hands. It is also cleaning the surfaces around us. We should always make sure that our surface is clean.

We should sanitize them using some powerful liquid so that we don’t get into contact with any germs. Even sanitizing can be done using heat methods. One of the commonly used methods in restaurants is hot water.

Cleaning with hot water is one of the best sanitizing methods. Also, we can sanitize using turmeric powder. Turmeric powder is found to be having good antibiotics, and it helps us in sanitizing our instruments.

There is even some procedure followed for sanitizing process. No matter what, we should always do proper sanitization to avoid contact with harmful viruses and bacteria.

It can be done with the help of carrying a hand sanitiser with us wherever we go so that we don’t have to rely on others. Also, we should use hand sanitiser before we sit to eat. 


What is Sterilization?

Sterilizing is the method used to keep the instrument away from any bacteria or virus. This method is mostly done by doctors before they perform any sort of surgery.

There are even types of sterilizers available. This method is highly recommended and should be done no matter what kind of urgent work we have before we perform any operation.

Because if we fail to do that and start the operation, then while doing the operation, the patient might get affected by germs and microorganisms, which will sometimes lead to the failure of the operation.

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Instruments will be sterilized using some powerful chemicals, which will help us to remove all of them. These chemicals should not be handled by our own hands. We should be more careful when we handle them. 

There are even some best sterilization methods available. It would differ on what type of instrument they are using and who they are going to operate.

Sterilizing is not only important for operations. We should even sterilize the things that are used by babies. Especially the milk bottles and the water bottles used by them.

They should avoid the infection as much as possible to get rid of any infection. Because once babies get an infection, it would be very difficult to treat them. 


Main Differences Between Sanitization and Sterilization

  1. Sanitization is a method used for cleaning our hands and other surfaces. On the other hand, Sterilization is the method used for cleaning surgical instruments. 
  2. Three methods of sanitization methods are available. But there are four types of sterilization methods that are available. 
  3. The best method to sanitize is by using a hand sanitiser. On the other hand, the best method to sterilize is by using hot water. 
  4. Sanitizing will just help us in controlling microorganisms to a certain level. But, sterilization will completely help us in removing all the microorganisms from the instrument that we are using. 
  5. The word sanitization is derived from the Latin word. The word Sterilization is derived from the French word.
Difference Between Sanitization and Sterilization

Last Updated : 18 August, 2023

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15 thoughts on “Sanitization vs Sterilization: Difference and Comparison”

  1. Sanitization and sterilization are essential for public health. It’s vital to understand the differences and the best practices for using each method.

  2. Sanitization and sterilization are fundamental for public health and medical safety. Knowing the differences is crucial for best practices and hygiene standards.

    • Completely agree. It’s important to ensure proper implementation of these methods for maintaining a safe and healthy environment.

  3. The distinction between sanitization and sterilization is important, and we need to ensure that these processes are carried out correctly in different settings.

  4. The comparison between sanitization and sterilization is very informative. It’s essential to know when and how to use each method properly.

    • Absolutely, understanding these practices helps us maintain cleanliness and safety in various environments.

  5. Sanitization and sterilization have distinct purposes and applications. It’s important to be well-informed about how to use them effectively.

    • Definitely, proper sanitization and sterilization are fundamental for keeping our environments, medical or otherwise, as safe as possible.

  6. Sterilizing medical instruments before an operation is crucial to avoid infections and ensure patient safety. We should always prioritize this process.

    • Absolutely, ensuring that the surgical instruments are properly sterilized is a key part of maintaining healthcare standards.

  7. Sanitizing our surroundings using disinfectant can help us stay healthy. It’s a simple and effective way to protect ourselves.


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