Dangers of Hand Sanitizers

According to the department of health, there might be a second wave of H1N1 Influenza A Virus. It is winter in other countries and during this season that influenza virus likely spread. This means that we should be more careful and that we take precautions like washing our hands often or bringing sanitizers with us always. Hand sanitizer is a convenient antiseptic product. However, we should be aware of its potential risks.

Hand sanitizer was introduced to the general public on 1997. Recently, there have been questions regarding its toxicity. Hand sanitizers are often left out in easy reach as if they were ordinary lotions instead of powerful chemicals. The most familiar danger caused by this product is poisoning, particularly for young children who are attracted to the fun scents and bright colors of many sanitizers. Most hand sanitizers have 62% alcohol or 120 proof. It has more alcohol than vodka or gin which is 80 proof. Because of their small stature and low body weight, children have gotten drunk after ingesting squirts of hand sanitizer due to its high alcohol content. A small amount licked by a child from his hands can cause glassy eyes, nausea, headache, disorientation, incoherent speech, stomach ache or vomiting. Victims should be rushed to the nearby hospital immediately and request for a blood alcohol level check.

Hand sanitizers are also highly flammable due to its high alcohol content. Fire marshals advised precautionary measures even there are no known fires linked to hand sanitizers.

It can also aggravate existing cuts or scrapes and cause burning, itching, or rashes. Ineffective use can also leave hands still dirty even after using the sanitizer.

To avoid hand sanitizers dangers:
• Keep hand sanitizers out of reach of your children.
• Opt to regular hand washing if possible. Use hand sanitizers only when it is not possible to wash hand conventionally.
• Use only a dime-sized spot and rub it thoroughly onto your hands until it evaporates completely.
• Use it only on hand and not on the other parts of your body.
• Closely supervise children during use.
• Discourage your children from biting their fingernails or putting their fingers on their mouth, eyes or nose especially after immediate use.
• Do not store sanitizers in hot places and keep it away from heat sources like bulbs, heaters or direct sunlight.
• Be sure that your hands are completely dry before cooking or grilling.
• Avoid contact with cuts, scrapes and wounds.

When used properly, hand sanitizers are safe and can be very effective at eliminating germs and bacteria. But hand sanitizers are good only for situations where soap and water are not available. It is always best to wash your hands with soap and water.

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  1. aq pa naman all the time alcohol or hand sanitizer lalo na pag finger food ang kinakain…

  2. i had never thought of it like that before.

    thanks for the info 🙂

    Tina from
    Mummy Diaries
    Game FreakZ
    Gossip Avenue
    Travel Shack

  3. Hi ross, when I read this article about hand sanitizer I shun from using it. But I bring along with me a small bottle of hand sanitizer for IMMEDIATE USE like in the malls. Ordinary soap and water is still the best.

  4. ang galing naman ng blog na ito, pr3 ka na mommy rosselllllllllll…congrats at sa topic mo naman, siguro mula ngayon medyo ibabawal ko na kay kim ang paggamit ng sanitizer…una bawal sa akin ang maoy at pangalawa e di naman pala maganda rin ang gumamit nito kahit pa sabihin na kontra sa mikrobyo…magsabon na lang di ba?

  5. @Joops

    Thanks! I lost my PR when I changed my domain but I asked reconsideration from Mr. Google and he listened.

  6. @Levy
    Thank God na walang nangyari kay Ren. Baka naman konti lang natikman nya. Itaas mo na palagi hand sanitizer nyo sa hindi nya maaabot.

    Thanks sa dalaw.

  7. @Dee
    62% is the standard alcohol content of hand sanitizer in order to be effective in killing bacteria and viruses. Hand sanitizers with lower alcohol content are considered substandard, hence, useless. You're right alcohol is cheaper and soap and water is still the best.

    Thanks for dropping by.

  8. Hello Ross. Thanks for sharing this info. I work in a store and we sell a lot of hand sanitizer because of the outbreak of H1N1. Gosh I did not know nga toxic iyong sanitizer. I always used it and immediately I grab foods with my hands. It's not good pala.

  9. Yup, that is why our hand sanitizer are always kept and the kids are not allowed to play with it..

    Congrats on your PR3..

  10. Hi Rossel, thanks for the info. Lagot, kasi nakatikim na ata ng hand sanitizer si Ren(my son) although di ko nakita na sinusubo nya, nakabukas na kasi nung nakita kong hawak nya. Hinugasan ko agad yung bibig, thanks God wala namang nangyaring masama.

  11. Thanks for sharing this, I didn't know about it. Yes, soap and water is still the best. Me naman, if no soap and water is available, alcohol na lang. I carry this super small bottle of alcohol wherever I go; if ubos na, i just refill it from the big bottle. I find alcohol cheaper than hand sanitizer kasi.:)

    Have a great weekend, Rossel! 🙂

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