Sodium bromide is a white, crystal-like, compound made of sodium and bromide (a charged bromine atom). It’s appearance closely resembles normal table salt. It is commonly used for the bromide that it contains, which means that this compound has a wide variety of uses.
Uses of Sodium Bromide
Sodium bromide once had many important uses in the medical industry. The bromide in this compound was used as a sedative, for headaches, as well as a anti seizure medication. Although this is no longer used in humans, because better drugs were developed, it is still a common anticonvulsant for dogs and cats. Potassium bromide is also used for this purpose.
Sodium bromide is also commonly used as a disinfectant for swimming pools and spas. It must be used carefully with chlorine because it makes the chlorine unstable and this causes a drop in the chlorine levels. It is widely marketed as a way to remove green algae blooms.
Sodium bromide also has an important application in the petroleum industry where it is used to prepare the dense fluids that are commonly used in oil wells.
It is also used in the preparation of other bromides. One of these is silver bromide, which was once widely used in photography. It is also used, together with concentrated sulfuric acid, to create pure bromide.