I just received an email about hand sanitizers being really bad for kids to use. I know, I know -- you shouldn't believe everything you read in forwarded emails, but this one checks out. You can see for yourself here on snopes.com.
The problem is that kids want to taste everything. So what happens is that their parents put a little hand sanitizer on their hands to clean them real quick, the child smells it and wonders, "Hmmmm, what would this taste like?".
Then the child tastes just a little bit of it, but the alcohol content is so strong (62% in Purell and Germ-X) that it reacts with them the same way 120 proof alcohol would react with an adult. Only it happens much quicker because a child's body is so much smaller.
This is really scary because so many people use this stuff these days. I know that Jim and I both use it as more of a convenience.
And there are also the types like Bath and Body put out that have the really great scents. You know kids would try to eat the ones that smell like oranges or apples.
But do we really even need this sort of germ warfare? Are the germs of today that much worse than they were 25 years ago? Are anti-bacterial products really something we should be using?
I know when I was growing up everyone used soap and water. That's because all germs aren't bad. There are millions of good bacteria that you need to have on your body and be exposed to everyday, and these types of products kill those too. Maybe we shouldn't focus so much on getting rid of all the germs.
And isn't it better for your body to be exposed to some bad bacteria? That way your body has the chance to build up an immunity to it. That's why we have immune systems. And it needs to be allowed a chance to do what it's suppose to do.
We have a little one, and it scares me to think that something I have used to protect myself from germs would have such a grave effect on him. It makes me think twice about using it and then touching him. And I will definitely not be using it on his hands! We will be a soap and water family!