I reached my desk in office this morning and found one bottle on the table. At first I though that somebody left a sample to be tested. But a closer examination revealed that a hand sanitizer was left on the table for personal use from with a letter stating use of hand sanitizer to help prevent the spread of illness in the flu season. My company has recently installed hand sanitizer dispensers all over the place. You can miss me while walking in one of the alleys, but it is difficult to miss the hand sanitizer. Recently, I have seen hand sanitizer being distributed in shape of a pen, in which the sanitizer can be sprayed on to your hand. I appreciate the efforts put forth by companies and hospitals that are stressing on sanitizing the hands as Center for Disease Control (CDC) shows that over 80% infectious diseases are spread by hand.
Swine flu, which is an infectious disease, has further fueled the sales of hand sanitizer. I have written about the basics of swine flu, but I feel that it is important enough to reiterate the basics of staying healthy in the flu season. Before that, I would like to give information about hand sanitizers.
Purell, Germ-X, Clorox, Vicks early defense, dettol, clarus, aquagen perfect hand protector, Avante, Kimberly clark Kimcare, Dial are the major hand sanitizer brands. While searching through the sanitizer brands, I found that FDA recalled a hand sanitizer made by Clarcon because of high levels of disease-causing bacteria. Clarcon Biological Chemistry Laboratory Inc. of Roy, Utah, issued a voluntary recall of some skin sanitizers and skin protectants marketed under several different brand names.
What are main ingredients of hand sanitizer?
The smell or vapors that you inhale as soon as you drop the hand sanitizer on your hand is an organic alcohol, in most cases ethyl alcohol, which is the major ingredient of hand sanitizer. Depending upon what brand you are using hand sanitizer can contain ingredients such as: Water, Isopropyl Alcohol, Carbomer, Tocopheryl Acetate (Vitamin E), Glycerin, Propylene Glycol, Isopropyl Myristate, and Fragrance.
Are there alcohol free hand sanitizers in the market?
Alcohol in hand sanitizer is supposed to break cell wall of germs leading to their death. Alcohol based hand sanitizers may break down the skin’s protective barrier over time against bacterial infections. Also, alcohol is flammable, so a smoker needs to be careful. Alcohol-free
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Germ-X: This brand also comes with alcohol free version in bottles or individual wipes. The active ingredient is Benzalkonium Chloride. The alcohol free bottles look similar to the alcohol based ones, so make sure that you check the label before you buy it.
Babyganics: This brand can be found at Babies R Us or Toys R Us. Babayganics producs are generally natural and organic and their hand sanitizer is called The Germinator (sounds familiar, Terminator!). The active ingredient is Benzalkonium Chloride.
2 in 1 Handclens Foaming Hand Sanitizer: Some experts consider this as the most effective hand sanitizer in fighting against bacterial infections. The active ingredient us Benzalkonium Chloride and this hand sanitizer could be bit costly.
Avant: This hand sanitizer claims that the product is 99.9% effective toward the serious germs such as MRSA, E. Coli and Salmonella. Active ingredient is thymus vulgaris oil and the sanitizer is non-toxic and safe for sensitive skin.
- Maintain a healthy life style through rest, diet and exercise
- Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for 20 seconds or with alcohol based hand sanitizer
- Avoid touching your nose, mouth and eyes
- Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, or cough and sneeze in your elbow
- Keep frequently touched common surfaces clean
- Don’t spread flu. If you have flu or flu like symptoms, stay home
- Consider getting vaccinated against seasonal flu and consult your doctor about getting vaccinated against the H1N1
Well, I have my personal hand sanitizer at office and would recommend that you take extra care in this active flu or swine flu season.