Friday, September 2, 2016

FDA gives manufacturers 1 year to remove certain antibacterials from hand soaps

I have written previously about the undesirability of including antibacterial chemicals in hand washing soaps

In late 2013, FDA gave soap manufacturers a year to demonstrate that adding the antibacterial chemicals triclosand and triclocarban to "antibacterial soaps" had any benefit, compared with regular soaps, in terms of preventing illness and the spread of certain infections.

It appears that insufficient information was provided to FDA to convince the regulator, and so manufacturers now have a year to remove these ingredients from their products.

The new regulation does not currently affect chemicals including benzalkonium chloride, benzethonium chloride and chloroxylenol.  It also applies only to hand soaps and body washes.  It does not apply to toothpaste, for example.  It also doesn't apply to hand sanitizers, such as alcohol preparations, and products intended for use in hospitals, etc.

So, what are we to do?  The simple answer is to continue hand washing with regular soap - it's just as effective as "antibacterial soap".

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