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What do acids and bases have in common?

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Quick Answer

Acids and bases both have the ability to conduct electricity, and when both of them are dissolved in water they form ions that make the water more conductive. When disassociated in water, both acids and bases become neutralized.

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Full Answer

Acids and bases are two types of solutions that have different, distinct properties. Acids and bases can, in a sense, be thought of as opposites, because they can cancel each other out when one is added to the other. The acids and bases are quantified on a scale called the pH scale. On the pH scale, seven is neutral and any solution above seven is a base and any below seven is an acid. The further away from seven a solution is, the more acidic or basic it is.

When placed on skin, acids tend to burn and create irritation, while bases just feel slippery. Naturally occurring acids taste sour, such as citrus fruit, and bases taste bitter. On an atomic level, acids like to give off protons, and bases like to receive protons.

While the two types of solutions can be seen as opposites, they both share one very important and useful property. When acids and bases are dissociated in water, they form ions and make the water more conductive. When a drink claims it has electrolytes, this means that either an acid or a base was dissociated into that solution.

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