If the environmental whackos hadn’t screwed up decent hand washing with running water with their mustn’t “waste” water, “no new dams”, “use less” bullshit then yes, antimicrobial handwashes would be a complete waste of time and money. 2 minutes washing under running water with or without soap is about as clean as you’ll get even the grubbiest little mitts. I’m not convinced triclosan poses any risk whatsoever but if you’re really worried and can’t bear to upset the greenie meanies by using a decent amount of water then use an alcohol wash (it’s better than putting it in your gas tank, too ) In any case it’s not worth getting in a lather over
Should you be washing your hands or bathing your children with antibacterial soap?
The University of Texas student government and Canadian leaders say no. Many environmentalists and scientists agree.
The concern is triclosan, an antibacterial chemical used for more than 30 years in soaps, toothpastes, lotions and deodorant and marketed as a germ killer. But antibacterial soap does not work any better than regular soap, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other studies.
And there are growing concerns about the effect triclosan has on humans and what the chemical runoff does to plants and animals in lakes, streams and rivers.
“There’s not really a place for these products on the shelves in the community at this point,” said triclosan researcher Allison Aiello of the Center for Society Epidemiology and Population Health, University of Michigan School of Public Health.
During the past couple of years, Colgate-Palmolive, GlaxoSmithKline and Johnson & Johnson have removed triclosan from some of their products.
UT made news recently when student leaders passed a resolution calling for administrators to ban antibacterial soap from campus. It may have been more of a symbolic move because in 2008 the university began phasing out the use of antibacterial soap, mostly because of costs.
Earlier this month the Canadian government urged companies to voluntarily remove triclosan from household products because of concern about its toxicity to aquatic organisms. The Canadian action followed a government assessment that the current level of triclosan is not harmful to human health, but in significant amounts it can harm the environment.
The CDC says more research is needed to assess the human health effects of exposure to triclosan, which is also classified as a pesticide. Studies are under way at the Environmental Protection Agency and the Food and Drug Administration.
Researchers are looking at how the antimicrobial affects hormonal and immune systems and the chemical’s relationship to asthma and allergies. And could killing a specific bacterium, which triclosan does, tip a body’s balance to cause long-term health problems?