Partly it's because I don't indiscriminately view bacteria as 'the enemy'. Some bacteria are beneficial and I don't have any urge to kill them. Other bacteria can cause disease. I don't want to kill off the disease-causing bacteria that are easily eliminated, leaving only the extra-nasty resistant strains
. Back in ye olden days, people used normal soap and water to wash their hands. It was effective at removing pathogens. It still is. Products containing the antibacterial and antifungal agent triclosan
(structure shown) are overkill, in my opinion. They don't confer any benefit over normal good hygeine and washing with ordinary soap and water. They could be associated with the development of dangerous strains of bacteria.
Triclosan doesn't just wash off your hands and out of the environment. A 2002 Swedish study found triclosan in 3 out of 5 human breast milk samples. The manufacturing process can lead to triclosan being contaminated with dioxin plus triclosan can react with chlorinated water to form dioxin. Sounds great, doesn't it? I advise my kids against using antibacterial products at school (which is big on hand sanitizer), don't buy them for home, and hope more people will become aware of the potential hazards associated with using these products. If you absolutely have to use hand sanitizer, you might want to make your own.