Lithium: Behaviour of Lithium

What is Lithium

Lithium is an element. It derived from “lithos” the Greek word for stone, because it is present in trace amounts in virtually all rocks. It works with other elements, drugs, enzymes, hormones, vitamins, and growth factors in the body in many different ways. People use it for medicine.

It is used for mental illnesses, including bipolar disorder, depression, and schizophrenia; for eating disorders, including anorexia and bulimia; and for blood disorders, including anemia and low white-cell count (neutropenia).

It also used for headache, alcoholism, epilepsy, diabetes, liver disease, kidneydisorders, arthritis, a skin condition called seborrhea, and overactive thyroid. Other uses include treatment of asthma, Huntington’s disease, Graves’ disease, herpes simplex, a movement disorder called tardive dyskinesia, Tourette’s syndrome, cyclical vomiting, Meniere’s disease, a tingling or “crawling” sensation in the skin (paresthesias), and aggressive behavior in people with attention deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).


Properties: In the periodic table some elements of different series show similarities, known as a diagonal relationship. Li, of the alkali metals, show such a similarity with Mg of II group. That means it differs from alkali metals. Some of the important abnormal characters of lithium are given below.

It is a hard metal while other alkali metals are soft and can be cut with the knife. Its melting point and boiling point are high. The melting point of Lithium is 180.5 °C.

It directly unites with \text N_{2} while no other alkali metal combines directly.

Lithium 6 \text {Li + N}_{2} \longrightarrow 2 \text {Li}_{3}\text {N}

Lithium element forms a carbide on the direct combination. Group IA elements do not form directly. But all these elements are known to give carbides.

The solubilities of Lithium Hydroxide (LiOH), Lithium Carbonate (\text {Li}_{2} \text {CO}_{3}), Lithium Phosphate (\text {Li}_{3} \text {PO}_{4}), and Lithium Fluoride (LiF), are very less compared to the high solubilities of the other alkali metal compounds.

Lithium Hydroxide is a weaker alkali than the alkali metal Hydroxides. Basic nature of other alkali metal Hydroxides is more than Li(OH). Because of this Lithium Hydroxide Carbonate, nitrates are thermally unstable.