Anti-bacterial soap. Are you for or against?

  • silverfox

    Posts: 3178

    Jun 02, 2009 5:12 PM GMT
    I have heard conflicting reports on the benefits or problems associated with anti bacterial soap.

    Anti bacterial soaps are all over the place, including dispensers all throughout my gym.

    I was under the impression that this soap was not good to use because it contained minuet traces of antibiotics which actually broke down your resistance over time. I have also heard similar regarding cold remedies such as "zycam".

    But someone told me today that this is indeed wrong and the benefits of using anti bacterial soap in public places like the gym definitely outweighed the minuses.

    What do you think? Do you use anti bacterial soap?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 5:27 PM GMT
    They are no better than regular soap because we dont wash our hands long enough for the antibacterial chemical to work. A good hand washing with any soap will go just as well.

    Is antibacterial soap any better than regular soap?
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 5:54 PM GMT
    On a related topic, in 1984 I was judging a high school regional science fair. One of the projects concerned a study of the level of microorganisms present in bars of soap in public restrooms & showers. This was before liquid soap dispensers had become prevalent.

    The student successfully demonstrated that soap bars acquire high levels of active bacterial & viral agents while they are in use, and are a potential source for the spread of disease. The erroneous assumption would be that since soap dissolves away, no microbial contamination would remain, being washed off, but the opposite was proven true.

    I gave her one of the 10 awards from the US Army that I could grant, a special one designating something of particular direct interest to the Army, in this case because it dealt with field sanitation. I was amused that at the awards ceremony, the US Air Force reps also gave her their own equivalent award for the same reason.

    And I've never wanted to touch a public bar of soap ever since. LOL! Fortunately they are very rare these days in the US.
  • Timbales

    Posts: 13993

    Jun 02, 2009 5:57 PM GMT
    Antibacterial soaps have no choice in how they were born.
  • Delivis

    Posts: 2332

    Jun 02, 2009 6:02 PM GMT
    I dont use any. I am not a fan of the germophobic rediculously sterile lives some people seem obsessed with living in.
  • ShawnTX

    Posts: 2484

    Jun 02, 2009 6:08 PM GMT
    Fear-based marketing.
  • Bunjamon

    Posts: 3161

    Jun 02, 2009 6:09 PM GMT
    Washing your hands, with antibacterial soap or not, is the only way to keep your hands clean and seriously reduce the incidence of illnesses like gastroenteritis, the flu, the rhinovirus, and all that good stuff.

    Antibacterial soaps don't contain antibiotics, they contain substances that make microbial cells rupture (Purel, for example, is just alcohol).

    That being said, though, there is no significant difference between antibacterial soaps and normal soaps as far as benefits goes. What's important is that you're WASHING your hands.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 6:39 PM GMT
    I was a truly disgusting child roll in dirt, eat expired food, shared ice cream with the dog, put lego I left in the yard in my mouth, chew up strangers pens, had a dozen tetnus shots from playing on the construction site near my house, had vaccines for all tropical diseases 3 times......worked with kids, and in a micro lab and eat raw food etc

    As a result I am almost completely immune to all the common pathogens that seem to make everyone else sick...I worry that raising kids and over prescribing them antibiotics in this sanitized, hypoallergenic world is going to leave them devoid of an immune system which in reality is better than an antibacterial soap can provide

    And then...to top it off were refusing to vaccinate because of some hippie propaganda
  • HndsmKansan

    Posts: 16311

    Jun 02, 2009 7:17 PM GMT
    I don't have a problem with it. I have it at my sinks at home.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 7:23 PM GMT
    against: it is the reason we have MRSA today; however, since we have stronger bugs it follows that we now, unfortunately, need stronger anti-microbials... however, we created this mess by over-sanitizing.
  • silverfox

    Posts: 3178

    Jun 02, 2009 8:23 PM GMT
    MsclDrew saidI was a truly disgusting child roll in dirt, eat expired food, shared ice cream with the dog, put lego I left in the yard in my mouth, chew up strangers pens, had a dozen tetnus shots from playing on the construction site near my house, had vaccines for all tropical diseases 3 times......worked with kids, and in a micro lab and eat raw food etc




    ......and still you are HOT icon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gificon_biggrin.gif
  • DCEric

    Posts: 3713

    Jun 02, 2009 8:42 PM GMT
    dancerjack saidagainst: it is the reason we have MRSA today; however, since we have stronger bugs it follows that we now, unfortunately, need stronger anti-microbials... however, we created this mess by over-sanitizing.


    This.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 9:01 PM GMT
    Against it !! As has already been stated we don't wash long enough
    to reap any of it's benefits. Regular soap is fine. AB soap also has a
    nasty backlash in that it eliminates helpful bacteria and certain
    lower bacteria and inadvertently helps to create new drug resistant
    bacteria. It also causes problems within the eco/water system
    effecting algae, invertabraes and in turn can affect animals
    like fish and birds. Evil stuff !!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 9:17 PM GMT
    Timberoo saidAntibacterial soaps have no choice in how they were born.


    LMAO!
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 9:20 PM GMT
    I'm against soap in general
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 9:30 PM GMT
    I don't buy AB soaps, just normal soaps; I have read too that in normal hand washing there is not enough time fot the chemicals to work.

    BTW, those two who say they don't use soap or are against it: what do you use then? Because you wash your hands, right? icon_question.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 9:34 PM GMT
    Well it depends. On a normal day, then no, regular soup is fine. Although, while working in a hospital (as I have), using some kind of soup with antibacterial or antimicrobial properties is a must. The prevention of the spread of nosocomial infections are a big issue!
  • calibro

    Posts: 8888

    Jun 02, 2009 9:34 PM GMT
    down with ab
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 9:42 PM GMT
    I've been told by a couple of doctors I've dated that washing any good soap and hot water for at least 30 seconds will do just as much if not more that those AB soaps. icon_biggrin.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 10:24 PM GMT
    dancerjack saidagainst: it is the reason we have MRSA today; however, since we have stronger bugs it follows that we now, unfortunately, need stronger anti-microbials... however, we created this mess by over-sanitizing.


    Hmmm.... MRSA Methicillin Resistant Streptococcus Aurus

    How would the use of antibacterial soap and alcohol sanitizer induce antibiotic resistance (Methicillin) into a bacterium

    MRSA comes from the over-prescription of Penicillin derived antibiotics by doctors and the introduction of these into to the food supply to increase meat and dairy yields
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 10:33 PM GMT
    Yeah...anti-bacterial hand soaps and sanitizers have NOTHING to do with MRSA.

    Meanwhile, there is some controversy out there in regard to unnecessary sanitization of the hands, among other body parts, but knowing that regular liquid soap (without anti-bacterial agents) is enough, why go overboard? icon_wink.gif
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 11:24 PM GMT
    MsclDrew said
    dancerjack saidagainst: it is the reason we have MRSA today; however, since we have stronger bugs it follows that we now, unfortunately, need stronger anti-microbials... however, we created this mess by over-sanitizing.


    Hmmm.... MRSA Methicillin Resistant Streptococcus Aurus

    How would the use of antibacterial soap and alcohol sanitizer induce antibiotic resistance (Methicillin) into a bacterium

    MRSA comes from the over-prescription of Penicillin derived antibiotics by doctors and the introduction of these into to the food supply to increase meat and dairy yields



    it's the principle drew. over-sanitizing and over-prescribing drugs has caused the problem.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 11:39 PM GMT
    I rub alcohol on my body.



    But that´s just because I enjoy it.

    As to washing, soap and hot water. Not funny super soap.
  • Posted by a hidden member.
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    Jun 02, 2009 11:52 PM GMT
    As long as it doesn't contain an antibiotic I have no problem with it. Otherwise I don't buy it, bacteria evolve!
  • MSUBioNerd

    Posts: 1813

    Jun 03, 2009 12:13 AM GMT
    I'm an evolutionary biologist who works on microbes, so I'm strongly against the use of antibacterial soaps outside of medical settings. Subclinical doses of antibiotics are one of the primary causes of the spread of antibiotic reistance; if the chemical is not present long enough and high enough concentrations to kill the overwhelming majority of the infectious population, many small effect mutations which increase resistance by a small amount will be selectively favored in the population, which will then have a chance to acquire secondary mutations that increase the level of resistance and/or reduce the cost of resistance when the antibiotic isn't present. Overuse of antibiotics not only lowers the effectiveness of antibiotics when their use is appropriate, it also increases the probability of carrying dangerous microbes on your skin because you are removing many harmless ones and opening up space for potentially pathogenic ones.

    If you want to sterilize a surface at home, use bleach. Or rubbing alcohol. Both of these don't have specific molecular targets of actions, and thus are unlikely to lead to resistance mutations.