In the past couple of years the use of sanitizer has sky rocketed. You see the dispensers in schools, stores, hospitals, and homes, you see the mini hand sanitizers clipped to backpacks. More and more people are utilizing this quick and easy form of “hand washing”, but is it safe? The answer is no and here is four reasons why:
Antibiotics are becoming over used and because of this we are creating super bugs. The over use of antimicrobial products has begun to create antibiotic-resistant strains of bacteria (Miller).
Triclosan and triclocarbon:
Triclosan is found in most handsanitizers and has multiple negative effects. These chemicals not only weaken your immune system making you more susceptible to allergies but can also lead to hormonal effects. Triclosan is also one of the causes of super bugs (Fukushima). Triclosan is not only found in hand sanitizer but also in a lot of other home cleaning and beauty products, because of this triclosan is in our water supply and is also found in the dust in houses. Triclosan has multiple other negative effects on us and the environment check out my next blog on triclosan to learn more.
I am sure you have heard of reports of people being hospitalized because they ingested hand sanitizer. This not only happens to people who purposefully drink it but is also happening to adults and children who accidentally ingest it. Did you know just a few squirts is equal to a couple shots of hard liquor (Fukushima). Any alcohol base hand sanitizer uses 60%-95% ethyl alcohol, isopropyl alcohol, or a mix of both. The alcohol helps kill off microbes but is also used so that the chemical in hand sanitizer is absorbed by your skin quicker, this also is why sanitizer may be drying out your skin (Miller).
Vanilla, lavender, sweat pea are all wonderful smells but do you know the real price of your new scent? Companies don’t want to give out their “Trade Secrets” to the perfect scent so they are actually not required to list the ingredients to make up that pine tree smell. Behind each scent is a list of chemicals. Main chemicals to look out for (if listed at all) is phthalates and parabens. These are chemicals to look for in multiple products such as shampoo, conditioner, body wash, soaps, and hand sanitizers. Parabens can cause endocrine disruption, skin irritation, reproductive toxicity, immuno toxicity, and cancer (Miller). Phthalates is a chemical that used to make certain scents and can also be found in plastic where it is used to make toys flexible. Phthalates mimics hormones and can potentially alter genital development.
Washing your hand with a natural soap is just as effective and is safer for everyone. So next time you walk past the sink and head toward the hand sanitizer think of yours and your loved ones safety first.
Fukushima, K. (2014, November 30). 5 Hidden Dangers of Hand Sanitizers. Retrieved December 3, 2015, from http://www.thestreet.com/story/12966410/5/5-hidden-dangers-of-hand-sanitizers.html
Miller, Z. (2014, October 26). Hidden dangers of hand sanitizers. Retrieved December 3, 2015, from http://www.naturalnews.com/047400_hand_sanitizers_triclosan_parabens.html