Difference Between Oxidation and Reduction

The chemical reactions which often work together are oxidation and reduction. During this reaction there is an exchange of electrons. When reduction oxidation reactions occur simultaneously it is called as redox reaction or reduction- oxidation reaction. These are balanced chemical reactions.


On introducing two molecules to each other, one molecule loses an electron. This reaction is called oxidation. Electrons are lost. Removal of hydrogen group. Adding oxygen. Reaction release energy. Electrons are released in the surrounding. Oxidation state increases. Occurs in reducing agents. Example for reducing agent is metal.


On introducing two molecules to each other, one molecule gains an electron. This reaction is called reduction. Electrons are gained. Addition of hydrogen group. Removal of oxygen. Reaction stores energy. Electrons are obtained from the surrounding. Oxidation state decreases. Occurs in oxidizing agents. Examples of Oxidising agent are ozone, bleach, peroxide etc

Difference between Oxidation and Reduction



Losing electrons

Gaining electrons

Increase in oxidation number

Decrease in oxidation number

For a given compound losing hydrogen

For a given compound gaining hydrogen

This reaction releases energy

This reaction stores energy

oxidizing agents: Ozone, Bleach, peroxide

Common reducing agent is metal