Yes, magnesium is called a flammable solid. It can ignite when wet. Magnesium fires can release toxic vapors.
Yes. Magnesium is very dangerous when it is wet. It can spontaneously ignite when it comes in contact with water or anything damp. Inhalation of magnesium dust or fumes can irritate the respiratory tract – causing coughing or chest pains. If it comes in contact with your skin, it may have a chemical reaction with any moisture on it and can cause eruptions or skin burns.
Elemental magnesium like elemental sodium is quite dangerous and will react violently upon contact with water. However, as with sodium, the cationic form of magnesium is a necessary part of our diet. It is a component of the scaffolding of our bones and is involved in muscle tone. You would not want to eat magnesium in its elemental form, but as a salt, for example MgCl2, is an important part of the diet.
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