Wednesday, May 7, 2008

What-Doesn't-Work-for-me-Wednesday: Antibacterial Soaps and Lotions

I'm definitely a germ-conscience Mom, but now I'm questioning my love for anything antibacterial. More and more reports are saying that kids need more exposure to germs. Adding to my concern is that in the last 3 days, I have read two very scary articles...



Daycare may protect kids from leuk.emia... if you'd like to avoid reading it, it basically says that some kids are born with a genetic mutation and if they get certain infections, it can trigger leuk.emia. The theory is that if children are exposed to and contract many infections in early childhood, they will have better immunity later.



The next article I read was from Pare.nts Magazine called "Surprising News About Diabe.tes". The don't know exactly what causes type I diabe.tes, but they think it could be caused by environmental factors. One they mention is Extreme Cleanliness, since many of our kids aren't exposed to normal germs, their immune systems aren't as strong, which can cause an auto-immune reaction in the pancreas... type I diabe.tes.



Now, don't get me wrong. I am a Stay-At-Home Mom and plan to keep it that way. Daycare has some positives, but also has some negatives, and I won't change my parenting philosophies for a theoretical risk... especially if I can do something about it.



I have decided to stop buying antibacterial gels and hand soaps. Many pediatricians, including mine, seem to think we should anyway. And maybe we should be scheduling more play dates and playgroups, even if kids are sick, to expose everyone to normal germs. I need to be careful of disease since I'm pregnant and I'll also want to be careful once the baby is born. But once the baby is a few months old, I will swear off them for good.



Now, if I could only get Bath & Bo.dy Works to make a hand soap without antibacterial properties. I love their scents so much! Anyone know if they already make it? Anyone want to join me in emailing them to request that they start a new line of regular (non-antibacterial) hand soaps?


To share what doesn't work for you, stop by Shannon's blog, Rocks in my Dryer.

8 comments:

*carrie* said...

Great post, Abbey. I was just talking with a nurse friend about this last week. I agree about the BBW soaps! My friend said to avoid "triclosan" which is in all the soaps we have at home right now. Thanks for the info!

Tara said...

Here's a thought on the B/B works soaps. You can use their regular body wash as hand soap. Yup. Just put it in your hand soap pump. You may want to water it down a little to make it last longer, but you'll have your nice scent and no antibacterial stuff! Works for me! :)

Lady Why said...

Yes, it's that nasty triclosan that causes problems in antibacterial products. You can use hand sanitizers more safely if they are primarily alcohol which evaporates quickly... killing the germ once and then going away rather than staying on your hands to kill germs for an extended period of time the way triclosan does.

Nicol said...

First, I have your same view on daycares. The reason why I opened an in-home daycare was so I didn't have to put Livy into one. She is still being exposed to stuff but I am so happy that she is here with me. Hopefully I can get rid of the daycare and become a full stay at home mom.

I have been thinking about anti-bac soaps too. I usually purchase in bulk and all that you can find is the anti stuff. I need to find a different route. I liked Tara's comment of using body wash instead of hand soap. It should do the same thing...wash off the dirt.

ruth said...

You can just put shampoo in your hand soap dispenser. As far as I know, shampoo isn't anti-bacterial. You could even get Bath and Bodyworks shampoo. My sister has been doing this forever with cheap, store brand shampoo.

Sarah said...

I recently switched to bar soap. I go to the whole fooods store and buy the bars of glycerin soap and I love the different scents they come in, all very natural. They can get pricey but I stick to the cheaper ones they offer. So far I really like them and they are great! The body wash idea sounds good though as well.

Chase said...

you might not want to use shampoo as a replacement- since the foaming agent in most shampoo (SLS) is a skin irritant. we're lucky to get a big box of homemade barsoap from my aunt every year for christmas and it takes us a while to work thrpugh all that. hmm... maybe my fam should be washing pur hands more...

Miss Valerie Jean said...

My favorite non-antibacterial handsoap is by Method which you can find at Target or through their website. The scent is sweetwater and I love it so very much-I hope they make it forever! by the way, i clicked through from Rocks in my dryer!