Are hand sanitizers safe?

Question

How safe are hand sanitizers? I recently read about a young boy who got alcohol poisoning from using one too often, and since then everyone seems to be saying it’s safer to use regular soap instead. What are your thoughts?

Submitted by Beautysouthafrica on 22 July 2015

Answer

Alcohol based hand sanitisers are an excellent option to use if your hands aren’t very dirty and you are nowhere near soap and water, they can kill about 60% of known bacteria and even some viruses, but they don’t work on dirty hands as the alcohol won’t penetrate the dirt. Soap and water is a better option than hand sanitisers so if you are near a facility that provides them, rather use that option. Another type of hand sanitiser is a non alcoholic anti bacterial one that uses Triclosan, which has been proven to be less effective than originally hope for, and may even be toxic, so again, soap and water wins hands down!

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