Smell Urine

scrunched up nose face

Here I want to describe a little about the sense of smell (olfaction). When you understand these principles you will be much more effective when it comes to purchasing and using odor removal products and getting the results you are looking for. If you smell urine or any disagreeable odor there has to be 4 conditions present. If you eliminate any one of these things the smell is gone. At least as far as your nose is concerned, it is gone. These four things are:

1. Molecules of the odorous (smelly) substance must be volatile enough to get into the air, or evaporate and get into the air, and enter our noses. If we stop the molecules from getting into the air they then will not enter the nose and you will not smell the odor. Some of the odor products that are available use this principle to eliminate the smells.

2. These molecules must be slightly water-soluble in order to pass through a mucus layer in our noses and reach our smell receptors. Again you will not smell urine if these molecules cannot reach your olfactory (smell) receptors.

3. These molecules must be lipid soluble because olfactory cilia are composed primarily of lipid material. Once again the same theory if the molecule cannot reach the sensors to trigger them and detect the smell then it is gone.

4. There has to be a sufficient number of these odorous molecules and they have to come in contact with the receptors for a minimum length of time for our noses to detect them.

You can see there are opportunities with each of the conditions to stop the smell. It should be said, that with smells there is also a possibility of a psychological issue to deal with. Our minds will play tricks on us and it can bring back smells to our memory that are as real as any smell that actually comes through the receptors in our noses. In these cases changing or stopping the molecules will not stop the smell. This then has to be approached from the psychological angle. I am not going to go into that here.

There are several very good chemicals on the market that stop or eliminate odors at different points in this process and they do it in different ways. You can read about the different methods these chemicals use to do this here. Types of chemicals.
Creative Commons License1 photo credit: bradleygee

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