Based on trials by many street medics, this is one recommendation for exposure to pepper spray, especially for the mucous membranes (eyes, nose, mouth, genitalia). Note: Many studies suggest the use of this may damage the eyes and may cause allergic reactions.
LAW. is a solution of half liquid antacid and half water. This only applies to aluminum hydroxide or magnesium hydroxide based antacids such as Maalox (plain, NOT mint, as it burns). Please note that simethicone based antacids have NOT used in trials so far, and therefore are not recommended (however, simethicone as a secondary ingredient in Maalox has not been shown to cause harm) Products like milk of magnesia and pepto bismol are NOT recommended.
Not all action medical folks use the same protocol. Some action medics only treat with an eye flush or eye wash of water or saline. This picture demonstrates an eye wash. Others use LAW. alone to flush the eyes. The trend has been toward using water (sometimes with salt in it to mimic tears) followed by several drops of LAW. or a spritz of LAW. with a spray bottle. This approach reduces the need for industrial medicines, demystifies the treatment, and makes it easier for protesters in general to learn how to treat themselves. An emphasis on using water reduces the chance that someone might think that they can't treat pepper spray victims because they don't have LAW. however, if water isn't available LAW. is the primary treatment. See the eye flush page to learn about the best technique for flushing eyes.
LAW. is also used to treat the skin; or as a mouth rinse, as long as the victim is alert and able to manage their own airway.
During cold weather, do your best to keep yourself and the victim dry.
A University of California San Francisco-based study has found that topical application of antacids for capsaicin-induced pain is effective, particularly in early treatment of exposure to refined capsaicin. This has no bearing on use in the eyes, only on undamaged skin.
A study by the journal Prehospital Emergency Care states that in a single blind study with antacids, milk, water, lidocaine, and baby shampoo there was no difference in time to resolution of symptoms