Antibacterial Soaps May Cause Allergies In Children?
Problems with Antibacterials
Through extensive advertising, manufacturers attempt to convince consumers that they are in battle with tiny invaders and must use specific antimicrobial products to protect their health.
Studies suggest that the widespread use of microbial chemicals may be causing these products to lose their effectiveness.
Triclosan in antibacterial soap affects immune system
Triclosan is a chemical that can be found in a variety of products, including antibacterial soaps, toothpaste, acne products, deodorant, shaving gel, and “natural” cosmetics. Trisclosan belongs to a class of toxins called endocrine-disrupting compounds (EDC’s) which may harm human health by mimicking hormones. The toxin is believed to damage reproductive organs, sperm quality, and the production of sex and thyroid hormones.
In a study conducted by the University of Michigan, investigators evaluated data from the 2003-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and compared triclosan levels with Cytomegalovirus (CMV) antibody levels and diagnoses of hay fever and allergies in adults and children older than six years. Expects use allergy and hay fever and CMV antibody levels as indicators of changes to the immune system.
The investigators found that individuals 18 years and younger who had higher levels of triclosan were more likely to have allergies and hay fever.
In July 2010, the National Resources Defense Council, a nonprofit environmental group, sued the Food and Drug Administration because it claimed the agency failed to finalize a document that would regulate toxins present in antibacterial soaps and other products. Triclosan and triclocarbon, a similar compound, are two toxins the Council noted are found in 76 percent of 395 liquid soaps
When asking our children to wash their hands, antibacterial soap may not be the product to use. Not only could the triclosan in these soaps be causing hay fever and allergies, it may also be behind other changes in the immune system.
Testing Antibacterial Soap
In July 2000, the Emerging Infectious Diseases Conference in Atlanta, featured several presentations concerning the relationship between the antibacterial lifestyle and the emergence of resistant bacteria. One of the presenters was Stuart B. Levy, who presented a paper entitled ” Antibacterial Household Products: A Cause for Concern.”
In his paper, Levy details studies which suggest that people may be at the threshold of a world where bacteria – due to the use of antibacterial products and misused antibiotics – may overtake people’s ability to kill them.
In 2005, Levy was a part of another study with five colleagues in his field where the findings were very different. The scientists divided 224 households into two categories: those that were given antibacterial products and those that were not. The study took place over the course of one year, and looked at families with similar backgrounds.
What the researches found is that there was no significant difference in the amount of bacteria killed by the use of antibacterial soap over regular soap. They also found that there was no significant increase in the presence of resistant bacteria in the homes that used antibacterial products. One year may have not be enough to draw a conclusion. The researchers did find that antibacterial soap showed no advantage over plain soap in its ability to kill bacteria.
Antibacterial Soap vs Regular Soap
Sometimes plain old soap can work just as well as today’s antibacterial agents. Washing your hands thoroughly with ordinary soap for 10 to 20 seconds, is the secret to preventing sickness and the spread of disease. For more data on antibacterial and causes of allergies visit the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.
Thoroughly Wash With Ordinary Soap!
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Fall Allergies- Causes and Treatment
My children and I struggle with seasonal allergies. My daughter seems to be worse during the fall. I haven’t been so bad, once I determined what causes the discomfort for us and what can I do in my home to improve our air quality so we won’t suffer.