Everywhere you turn, there is an advert for a medicated or antibacterial soap that is promised to do wonders for your skin and help reveal your skin’s inner glory
Also, some people get a false sense of security when using these soaps, thinking that it protects them better than ordinary soap and water. It does not.
Recently, some antibacterial and medicated soaps that contain certain chemicals have been banned by the US Food and Drug Administration, especially the ones that contain the chemical triclosan
But in general, these antibacterial soaps may be causing more damage to your skin, your body and your environment, and do not offer any added advantage than the ordinary non-medicated soaps
Here are some of the reasons why you should not use medicated soaps
They can lead to the growth and spread of antibiotic-resistant bacteria
The amount or dose of antibacterials contained in these medicated soaps are minimal and would not pose serious harm to these bacteria, Not only that, they are typically washed off your skin so quickly that it does not efficiently kill off large amounts of bacteria, and exposing bacteria to low doses and short durations of antibacterials can lead to the emergence of antibiotic-resistant strains because they quickly adapt and become resistant which poses a risk for everyone.
Your skin also contains normal bacteria that are good for your skin, these good germs help keep off harmful germs keeping a balance, when you upset this balance, you can cause the growth of harmful bacteria that may open you up to infections
They can increase your risk for allergies
Your skin contains many kinds of good microbes. These good microbes help protect your skin from other harmful germs or organisms that come in contact with your skin, and as such, are good for your overall health, using these antibacterial soaps can disrupt the normal flora of your skin and affect your immunity
This may result in the development of allergies
They affect the environment
Two recent studies from Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin found that both triclosan and triclocarban(main components in many of these medicated soaps) interfered with microbial communities that break down sewage, reducing their effectiveness, and encouraged bacteria to become more resistant to drugs.
We need to slow the rate that antibiotic-resistant bacteria proliferate in the environment
May affect your hormones:
Studies done on animals have shown that triclosan may alter the way many of your hormones work because of some of the results found in animals
There are also risks associated with being exposed to these chemicals over a long period, for example, rats were found to have transferred this chemical triclosan to their offspring and scientists are worried that it may result in serious risks in humans like hormonal imbalances that may lead to infertility, obesity and even cancer
Antibacterial Washes are no better than normal, non-medicated, regular washes and soaps:
Plain regular soaps and washes are as effective in the killing of germs and for maintaining personal cleanliness as any other specially formulated and expensive antibacterial soap or wash. Ordinary, inexpensive, non-medicated soaps or washes, work just as well.
What Should You Do?
Wash with plain soap and water or simply look for a soap that is pH balanced for your skin, there is no evidence that these medicated soaps are more efficient than the plain soap.
Also, wash your hands often, this is one proven way to prevent the spread of germs.