9 secret side effects of hand sanitizer according to doctors

Raise your hand if you’re lucky enough to have a bottle of hand sanitizer or a bottle of 40. Just one problem: There’s a good chance your hands will be dry and cracked. Hand sanitizers come with some side effects that can affect your skin and others. They are an essential tool in the fight against the spread of against COVID-19 But not without problems of its own. We asked top pros about how to ease the pain, so you can still use hand sanitizer without a problem. Read on—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don’t forget to check out these 19 Ways You’re Ruining Your Body.


Hand sanitizers may increase your risk of eczema

sick hand man

To prevent the spread of the coronavirus, the CDC recommends washing hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or if those aren’t available, using hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol Ho. That advice is essential to follow, but “irritants and increased contact with allergens may increase the risk of hand dermatitis or ‘eczema’.” It usually manifests on the skin with redness, dryness, cracks and even blisters that itch or cause pain.” Caroline Nelson, MD. a Yale Medicine dermatologist and instructor at Yale School of Medicine, tells Eat This, Not That! Health.

Rx: “It’s important not to overdo the sanitizer and moisturize after every use,” advises dermatologist Peterson Pierre, MD. Pierre Skin Care Institute.

“Using a moisturizer, ideally one containing mineral oil or petrolatum, can help prevent hand dermatitis. While moisturizer should be applied immediately after washing hands, this is not the case when using hand sanitizer. Individuals should rub their hands together for about 15-30 minutes. Cover all surfaces with hand sanitizer until hands are dry, and then apply a moisturizer,” Dr. Nelson says.

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Hand sanitizers can irritate your skin

Young woman scratching itchy/reddish rash on her hands.

Young woman scratching itchy/reddish rash on her hands.

“Hand sanitizers are antiseptic products—they’re formulated to disinfect the skin,” says Vanessa Thomas, a cosmetic chemist, and founder of Freelance Formulation. “The primary disinfectant ingredient in hand sanitizer formulas is ethyl or isopropyl alcohol, and they are formulated with thickener softeners and sometimes fragrances to reduce the strong odor of the alcohol. Repeated use can irritate the skin. or the skin may be dry. If you have sensitive skin, the effects may be worse. The drying is caused by alcohol.”

Rx: “Washing hands with warm water and soap is the best way to kill any germs, but many times you don’t have access to a sink and soap,” says Thomas. “If you can’t reduce your use of hand sanitizer, it’s a good idea to follow a moisturizing regimen. Dry skin is caused by a lack of water content in the skin. A moisturizer with humectants and occlusives works best. Is good. Occlusives help create a film on the skin to retain moisture, and humectants (hyaluronic acid is an example of one) help attract water to the skin.”

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Some formulations may affect fertility

Black man making heart holding his pregnant wife's belly

Black man making heart holding his pregnant wife’s belly

“Some hand sanitizers are made with alcohol, such as ethyl alcohol, as an active ingredient that acts as an antiseptic,” says Dr. Chris Norris, a chartered physiotherapist and neurologist and clinical associate professor at the University of California. “However, there are some non-alcohol-based hand sanitizers that contain an antibiotic compound called triclosan or triclocarbon. Several researches studies reported that triclosan is a health hazard because its overuse has negative effects on fertility, fetal development and asthma rates.”

Rx: Dr. Norris says, “It is always recommended to wash hands with water and soap to completely eliminate germs. Use sanitizers only when water and soap are not available.” Avoid those containing triclosan or triclocarban. For a complete list of dangerous hand sanitizers the FDA recommends you never buy, visit Here.

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Can cause resistance to some antibiotics

Pharmacist holding medicine box and capsule pack in pharmacy drugstore.

Pharmacist holding medicine box and capsule pack in pharmacy drugstore.

“Exposure to triclosan increases the chances of bacteria developing resistance to antibiotics,” says Dr. Norris. Again, find one without triclosan.

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Some hormones can cause problems

Take off the discomfort glasses after wearing for a long time and massage the bridge of the nose

Take off the discomfort glasses after wearing for a long time and massage the bridge of the nose

“According to the FDA, the triclosan in hand sanitizer also causes hormone problems. This allows bacteria to adapt to their antimicrobial properties, creating more antibiotic-resistant strains,” Dr. Norris says.


some affect your immune system

sneezing man with allergy or infection

sneezing man with allergy or infection

“Triclosan also impairs human immune function. Weakened immune systems make people more vulnerable to allergens,” says Dr. Norris.

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Some can affect the growth of your body

Woman with protective mask reading label on bottle while buying hand soap at supermarket during virus pandemic

Woman with protective mask reading label on bottle while buying hand soap at supermarket during virus pandemic

“A hand sanitizer that has a lot of fragrance can be loaded with toxic chemicals such as phthalates and parabens. Phthalates are endocrine disruptors that can affect the growth and reproduction of the human body. Parabens are chemicals that interact with hormones. can negatively affect functioning, fertility, birth outcomes, and reproductive development,” says Dr. Norris.

Rx: Find a phthalate and paraben-free hand sanitizer.


You Can Get a Skin Disorder

Women scratch itchy hand with hand.

Women scratch itchy arm with hand.

Dr. Norris says, “The overuse of alcohol-based hand sanitizers to protect against germs and infection-causing pathogens can inversely increase the risk of infection through skin disorders. Higher amounts can lead to benign bacteria on the skin. Can be removed which is not good.”

Rx: “Unlike hand sanitizer, soap and water can effectively remove dirt, grime, and eliminate pesticides and other chemical residues that have been on your hands,” Dr. Norris says.


Hand sanitizer can cause alcohol poisoning

children use antibacterial antiseptic hand sanitizer gel

children use antibacterial antiseptic hand sanitizer gel

Since many hand sanitizers have a very high alcohol content, doctors see cases of alcohol poisoning when it is ingested. Dr. Norris says, “Since hand sanitizers are readily available, there have been many cases globally where adolescents were hospitalized for alcohol poisoning from the use of hand sanitizers.”

Rx: Don’t drink it! Keep it away from your kids and educate your teens. Call 911 immediately if you swallow hand sanitizer.

related: Signs You’re Getting One of the “Deadliest” Cancers.


Final Thoughts from Doctors

girl washing hands under running water in black washstand

girl washing hands under running water in black washstand

“Hand sanitizers are a good option to reduce potentially infectious microbial load, such as viruses, bacteria, fungi, on hands or skin if soap and water are not immediately available,” says Tsipora Sheinhouse, MD, a board-certified FAAD. Dermatologist in Beverly Hills, Private Practice SkinSafe Dermatology. But remember: “They do not remove bodily dirt/grime/mucus, and are, therefore, not physically Washing your hands.”

“Hand sanitizer is not as good as soap,” warns Dr. Norris. “Relying on hand sanitizer to keep your hands clean may not be your best strategy.” And to get through your healthiest life, Do not take this supplement, which may increase your risk of cancer.

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