Pepper Spray for Self Defense (Good Choice?)

pepper spray peppers

Pepper Spray

Pepper spray is a very viable, long-enough lasting, and inexpensive means of self-protection.  If you’re concerned about being confronted by an attacker, you want something easy to carry.  You want something that can be used without thought or hesitation.

Other Options

Tasers/stun guns are another option.  Their effect is immediate but momentary; and, they are more cumbersome to carry around.  Tasers/stun guns emit electrical charges that disable an attacker but once that very temporary effect has passed your chances of escape diminish greatly.

Effects of Pepper Spray

Pepper spray triggers choking, coughing, blurry vision, and it burns.  Its immediate effects can last up to 30 minutes giving you time to get away, to find safety, and to get help. (Its debilitating effects can take several hours to be completely flushed from the body.)  You are much less likely to remain in harm’s way, in jeopardy, after using pepper spray than if you were to use a taser/stun gun.

Where to Aim

In using pepper spray, you aim directly for the face. In using tasers/stun guns you might flail about trying to find somewhere on the body to fire the piece.  Every second counts if and/or when you have to defend yourself.  If you ever find yourself in that kind of a fearful and heart-pounding situation, you want and need to be able to react as quickly and decisively as possible with the least amount of danger to yourself.

What’s in Pepper Spray

The active ingredient in pepper spray is capsaicin which is derived from chili peppers.  Because it has such a strong and multi-irritant causality when it comes into physical contact with our bodies, it is an ideal agent to use as a safeguard when one’s life is threatened.

Non-Lethal Alternative

Pepper spray is not – as a rule – lethal.   However, it can be fatal in such instances if someone suffers from asthma or other potentially severe respiratory ailments.  Regardless, it should not be precluded from being used as a self-protective deterrent because of that.


Our safety, our need to know that we have options for self-preservation in our daily lives is a concern we all live with.  Knowing that we can take certain precautions when we walk down the street, when we park in a public parking lot, when we are in new and unfamiliar surroundings is essential to our psyche when we walk out the door and into the reality of what we might face each day.

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