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FAQs About Antibacterial Soaps
Q. What is the main difference between plain soaps and antibacterial soaps used in the home?
A. The main difference is that antibacterial soaps contain a special ingredient for controlling germs. When washing with an antibacterial soap, a very small amount of antibacterial ingredient is deposited on the skin that keeps the number of germs at a significantly reduced level for an extended period of time. Washing with plain soap initially removes some germs, but the germs left on the hands can quickly regrow and increase in number.
Q. What germs do antibacterial soaps kill?
A. Antibacterial soaps kill or inhibit bacteria that cause odor, skin infections, food poisoning, intestinal illnesses and other commonly transmitted diseases. Their effectiveness depends on the antibacterial ingredient, its concentration, its contact time on the skin and the product formulation.
Q. Who should use antibacterial soaps?
A. Antibacterial soaps provide extra protection against bacteria that may cause many common illnesses. Consumers looking for additional protection before preparing and eating meals, after using the bathroom, diapering a child, after playing with a pet or when caring for the sick may want to use an antibacterial soap.
Q. Are deodorant soaps the same as antibacterial soaps?
A. No. A deodorant soap is a cosmetic product intended for washing the body to eliminate odors. A deodorant soap may or may not contain an ingredient that kills or inhibits the growth of odor-causing bacteria.
Q. Why are so many antibacterial soaps on the market now?
A. Soaps intended to kill or inhibit the growth of odor-causing bacteria have been marketed since the 1920s. Greater consumer concern over health risks from germs has generated increased demand for new antibacterial hand and body wash products.