Antibacterial Hand Soaps Banned

Public health experts have warned for years that antibacterial soaps may be doing the public more harm than good.

They believe that the products are no more effective than washing with ordinary soap and water and may pose health hazards including promoting drug-resistant infections and affecting hormones in children.

With their long-term safety and effectiveness unproven, last week the F.D.A. banned antibacterial soaps for consumers that contain triclosan, trilocarban and 17 other antibacterial chemicals.

The chemicals have been found in breast milk, blood, urine, dust, water, and newborn babies.

The ban will affect about 40 percent of hand washes and soaps. Other products may continue to contain the chemicals, including Colgate Total toothpaste. The agency is also studying the safety and efficacy of hand sanitizers and wipes.

Here is a list of the 19 newly banned chemicals:

  • Cloflucarban
  • Fluorosalan
  • Hexachlorophene
  • Hexylresorcinol
  • Iodine complex (ammonium ether sulfate and polyoxyethylene sorbitan monolaurate)
  • Iodine complex (phosphate ester of alkylaryloxy polyethylene glycol)
  • Nonylphenoxypoly (ethyleneoxy) ethanoliodine
  • Poloxamer-iodine complex
  • Povidone-iodine 5 to 10 percent
  • Undecoylium chloride iodine complex
  • Methylbenzethonium chloride
  • Phenol (greater than 1.5 percent)
  • Phenol (less than 1.5 percent) 16
  • Secondary amyltricresols
  • Sodium oxychlorosene
  • Tribromsalan
  • Triclocarban
  • Triclosan
  • Triple dye

To learn more about the F.D.A. ban go to: http://www.npr.org/sections/health-shots/2016/09/02/492394717/fda-bans-19-chemicals-used-in-antibacterial-soaps