Ban on Antibacterial Soap

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Image from www.cdc.gov

Antibacterial Soaps: Actually Dangerous?

Many may not realize this, but antibacterial soaps are beyond unnecessary. In fact, the FDA has instituted a ban on bacterial soaps. Specifically, there are nineteen chemicals that are being specifically banned. They include Triclosan, Triclocarban, and seventeen others. Companies that sell such products containing such chemicals have been given one year to get all the chemicals out before legal action is taken. One of the reasons that this ban has been instituted is that companies were required to provide information which pertained to the effectiveness, and ultimate safety, of the products they were selling.

What’s The Big Deal?

Apparently, certain compounds in antibacterial soaps can actually cause toxic hormonal imbalance. Triclosan, one of the active ingredients in many antibacterial antiseptics, is commonly found in urine and breast milk; meaning the chemical has actually seeped through the skin. The levels it has been found in these organic compounds is fairly consistent since testing began some thirteen years ago. Alterations which may happen from use of these chemicals include reproductive effects, thyroid effects, developmental and growth side effects, and stunted maturity in animals who are neonatal or adolescent. In addition, it was discovered that further generations are affected by compounds in these antibacterial soaps; not just the original user. It turns out DNA mutation could happen as a result of these substances’ regular use. Sometimes the cumulative effect of these chemicals and their genetic fallout can’t be observed for many years, making study especially difficult.

The Bacterial Resistance Factor

According to Smithsonianmag.com, antibacterial soaps increase bacterial resistance to antibiotics. It works on the same principle of athletic development. The more resistance you give your muscles, the stronger your muscles become. Well, antibiotics are kind of like a one-ton weight that those who designed them thought would be enough to permanently curtail bacterial development. The actual result has been the creation of super-bugs. Imagine a man bench-pressing a ton, as compared to a regular joe with no muscle tone. That’s the difference between, say, the flu, and super-flu. Antibacterial hand soaps actually make the microorganisms they’re supposed to protect against stronger by giving them a heavier obstacle to overcome. Those microorganisms who manage to get past antibacterial chemicals will naturally have a lot more strength behind them.

Environmental Fallout

Triclosan, one of the worst offenders in the antibacterial realm, can persist even after multiple sewer flushes. The end result is that this chemical regularly gets into streams, lakes, ponds, and even the ocean. This means wildlife is affected. Certain algae can no longer properly photosynthesize. Additionally, the chemical has the ability to biomagnify. Biomagnification means that greater concentrations of a given substance will appear in tissues of animals higher and higher up the food chain. A fish gets the chemical inside it, a fox eats the fish, a bobcat eats the fox, the bobcat is routed off a cliff by an elk who has the chemical affect it through the creature’s blood; you see how biomagnification works. As a matter of fact, bottlenose dolphins have been found off the coast of South Carolina as well as Florida who have had levels of Triclosan in their blood.

The Bottom Line

If you’ve got antibacterial soaps, get rid of those things. Nobody knows what the ultimate negative health effects of these things will be, but it’s not untoward to expect some form of cancer may develop. Tell everyone you know about the ban, and help get this harmful substance out of your house and disposed of in an environmentally proper way that doesn’t have negative fallout to people or local wildlife.

 

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