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Why You Should Drop That Bottle Of Hand Sanitizer?

Reviewed by
Dr. Sajjan R. Agarwal 85% (10 ratings)
MD - Skin
Dermatologist, Hyderabad  •  33 years experience
Why You Should Drop That Bottle Of Hand Sanitizer?

Although hand sanitizers offer you the convenience to clean your hands sans soap and water, and help in killing germs, these convenient health tools also come with their share of negatives.

Here's why you should drop that bottle of hand sanitizer, every time you can avoid and go conventional with soap and water:

1. Creation of Superbugs and Destruction of Cells
Although the ingredient triclosans prevent the development of bacteria, it does more harm than good. Studies show that it aids creation of superbugs (different types of bacteria that are resistant to certain forms of antibiotics). Furthermore, according to a 2014 study, triclosans have also been found to spur the development of breast cancer cells, not to mention the destruction of brain cells, according to research conducted by the university of california.

2. Causes Disruption in Hormones
Excessive use of hand sanitizers has also been found to bring about abnormal hormonal problems. Studies reveal that the triclosan ingredient can alter the way hormones function in the body, enabling bacteria to be able to adapt and become more resistant to antibiotics.

3. Development of Life-Threatening Health Problems
Another ingredient in hand sanitizers that play a role in preventing the growth of bacteria is parabens. This ingredient has been found to be a potent contributing factor in many health problems such as cancer, skin irritation, endocrine problems, to name a few.

4. Causes Skin Damage in The Long Run
As an active ingredient in hand sanitizers, alcohol can have an adverse effect on your health. It breaks down the protective outermost layer of skin, rendering it easy for toxins like parabens or bpa (bisphenol a) that is found in plastics to penetrate your skin easily.

5. Makes You Resistant to Antibiotics
Using hand sanitizers can make you resistant to antibiotics, thereby lowering your resistance to diseases. They may affect your body's immunity by killing off good bacteria that are responsible for keeping you safe from disease-causing bad bacteria. A study conducted in 2011 found that health care workers who used hand sanitizers more than soap and water are 6 times more likely to fall prey to outbreaks of norovirus (a highly infectious virus that causes viral gastroenteritis).

Washing the hands with an antibacterial soap is not always necessary unless there is an infection of hands or some where on the skin. Washing two three times with a good brand soap is sufficient to remove all the dirt and microbes every time you wash the hands. After hand wash dry the hands with a clean and washed cotton cloth.Always keep the nails very short so that they could also be cleaned properly.

Good personal hygiene along with clean environment normally is sufficient to avoid cross infection.

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