So I was already feeling kind of iffy about hand sanitizer. I still use the stuff in a pinch, but ever since people started freaking out about how our germ-phobic antibacterial ways will end up making us sicker than ever by creating a class superpowerful, antibiotic-immune bugs, I've tried to stick to soap and water whenever possible.
And it's a good thing, too! Apparently. Kleenex-brand Luxury Foam Hand Sanitizer recently recalled hundreds of bottles of the product because they contained bacteria that "may pose serious health risks to people with weakened immune systems." Isn't it ironic/dontcha think/It's like microbial bacteriaaaaa in your hand sanitizer! By the way, that Alanis Morissette reference is a double-whammy: Not only does this recall reek of irony, it happened in Canada.
Supposedly healthy people aren't at much of a risk, but those aforementioned folks with the weakened immune systems, "especially those with cystic fibrosis," could develop anything from pneumonia to blood infections. Well, that's just awesome.
Of course recalls of all kinds of products happen all the time. But here's the part I don't get -- isn't hand sanitizer supposed to kill germs? Why didn't the bacteria contaminating those recalled bottles get zapped on contact with the magic goo inside? I'm confused. Unless this particular bacteria is one of those superpowerful, antibiotic-resistant bugs we created by using too much hand sanitizer ... ack, it's like a riddle wrapped up in a mystery inside an enigma! My head is spinning!
Anyway, moral of the story? Soap. Soap and water are your friends. As for on-the-go cleanups, why not stash a package of plain old baby wipes in your bag? They won't kill germs, but they won't breed monster zombie germs either.
Do you use hand sanitizer?
Image via Myrone Delacruz/Flickr