Organic chemistry is a branch of chemistry that involves the study of organic carbon compounds. It encompasses the structures, composition, and synthesis of carbon-containing compounds. In understanding organic chemistry, it is important to note that all organic molecules consist not only of carbon, but also contain hydrogen. While it is true that organic compounds can contain other elements, the bond between carbon and hydrogen is what makes a compound organic.
Originally, organic chemistry was defined as the study of compounds created by living organisms. However, its definition has been enlarged to include artificially synthesized substances as well. Before 1828, all organic compounds were obtained from living organisms. Scientists didn’t believe it was possible to synthesize organic compounds from inorganic compounds. Many attempted to do so and failed. However, in 1828, urea was synthesized from inorganic substances, paving the way for a new definition of organic chemistry.
There are more than six million known organic compounds. In addition to being plentiful, organic compounds are also unique. This is because carbon atoms have the ability to form strong bonds with many different elements. Carbon atoms are also able to bond covalently to other carbon atoms, while simultaneously forming strong bonds with other nonmetal atoms. When carbon atoms bond together, they can form chains consisting of thousands of atoms. They can also form rings, spheres, and tubes.
Many individuals consider organic chemistry to be very complicated and unrelated to daily life. Though the study of organic chemistry may be complex, it is very important to everyday life. In fact, organic compounds are a part of everything, from the foods we eat to the products we use. They are important in the creation of clothing, plastics, fibers, medications, insecticides, petroleum-derived chemicals, and a long list of products used to support life and to make it more convenient.
The study of organic chemistry is important, not only to those who are interested in science-related careers, but to every individual alive today and to those who will be born in the future. Organic chemistry is key in developing new products and improving those on which we’ve become dependent. Each year, organic chemists make discoveries that are helpful in improving medicines, aiding agricultural growth, understanding the human body, and performing countless tasks important to the average person.