Your Antibacterial Soap May Do More Harm Than Good

By: | September 21st, 2016

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We all believe that antibacterial soaps contain chemical ingredients that assist in killing bacteria.

But according to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), there has not been enough scientific evidence to show that antibacterial soaps can protect against germs any better than plain soap and water. Not only that, the antibacterial soaps may pose health risks as well.

Theresa Michele, FDA’s director of the division of nonprescription drug products, said, “the vast majority of the more than 2,000 antibacterial products on the market contain at least one of the banned ingredients.”

Recently, the FDA banned antibacterial ingredients including the most commonly used chemicals triclosan and triclocarban in antibacterial soaps. Manufacturers have been given a year to make sure these banned ingredients are removed from their product.

As of now, this rule applies to consumer hand washes and soaps only. FDA is studying the safety of ingredients in hand sanitizers and wipes before issuing a final rule on them. Other products may still continue using these chemicals.

Nidhi Goyal

Nidhi is a gold medalist Post Graduate in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences.

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