The Benefits of using organic antibacterial handwash to help in the fight against coronavirus
Washing hands regularly is an important part of cleanliness and hygiene routine. Majority of the communal diseases, including that of the latest outbreak of COVID-19 coronavirus, spread through touching infected hands on face and other body parts. In the past diseases like Swine flu have also spread through touch and droplets. We are living very busy lives today, and in the globalised world, viruses and bacteria spread rapidly. In the case of COVID-19 coronavirus, we have not yet discovered the vaccine to treat it, and given the fact, there are very few kits and virology labs that can detect it, our only offence is defence. Doctors have recommended isolating ourselves and avoid touching eyes and face.
Doctors always recommend washing hands using a hand wash post use of restrooms and before eating a meal. In earlier times soap and water were used for washing of hands, but it is proven that use of hand wash with antibacterial properties helps to kill the germs and bacteria that can result in illness.
Problem with inorganic or chemical-based hand wash:
Now if you step out to buy a hand wash, there will be numerous brands claiming various antibacterial properties. Still, the majority of those will be chemical-based or inorganic in nature. These inorganic hand washes are produced in batches, stored for months in warehouses and are heavily marketed by big brands. They contain harmful chemicals like SLS, Triclosan that can result in skin irritation and deplete your skin of natural moisture, making it dry and flaky. If you have sensitive skin, frequent use of these handwashes can also result in redness and disturb the pH balance of your skin or result in allergies. Some of these hand washes are alcohol-based and do not have FDA approval or are banned in specific geographies. Majority of these hand washes are made up from processing petrochemicals and contain Parabens that are harmful to your skin.
So is there a better alternative to these harsh chemical-based hand washes? The answer is yes, the better alternative is to use the organic hand wash with natural antibacterial properties.
What are organic antibacterial hand wash?
Organic antibacterial handwash is made up of natural ingredients that have bacteria-killing properties like lemon extracts, tea tree oil and Azadirachta. They are free from harmful chemicals and Parabens and do not have an alcohol base. They do not contain Triclosan which is a chemical banned by the FDA. These organic hand washes are made in small batches and also available in form or hand made bars.
The organic hand washes have moisturising elements like coconut oil or shea butter that helps to retain the natural moisture of your skin and maintain its pH balance. You can use these hand wash even if you have sensitive skin prone to allergies.
These hand wash may cost you a little more than the chemical-based ones but are definitely recommended for long term use without any side effects. While purchasing organic antibacterial hand wash, make sure that they are certified by your local authority and have FDA clearance. Carefully read the ingredients list and ensure it does not contain any artificial or added preservatives, or other sulphates and Parabens. Try to identify a brand that suits you and your family and try to stick to a single brand. Try to buy the hand wash from small manufacturers who make them in small batches, to ensure better quality. A good organic antimicrobial hand wash should not cost you much more say for a small 8 oz bottle compared to non-organic. The organic version is also available in variants like foaming hand washes that give you extra lather that builds on.
Why is Triclosan harmful?
One of the most commonly found chemicals in inorganic hand wash is Triclosan. Triclosan was initially used to sterilise medical apparatus and tools, but now due to its antimicrobial properties and increase of germ prone diseases like the latest COVID-19 coronavirus is being added to all products related to hygiene. Unfortunately, even though it is effective in killing the unwanted germs and bacteria, it is also suspected to be carcinogenic. It is proved that excessive use of Triclosan can result in endocrine disruption and the washing away of it through our pipes and drains is affecting our water life. Children exposed to Triclosan at an early age are more prone to allergies and asthma, and it can also result in Thyroid disorders and hormonal changes amongst adults.
More than 58% of the water in the United States has been exposed to Triclosan and that is why now it has been banned by the FDA. So it is a high time that we make our switch to cleaner and greener alternatives like organic antibacterial hand wash.
Types of ingredients in organic antibacterial hand wash: Some natural elements to look out for in your organic hand wash;
Turmeric: This yellow coloured Indian spice is rich in antibacterial properties and also heals wounds and cuts. It has a strong smell and yellow colour that prevents fungal infections, so it is a beneficiary element in your handwash.
Azadirachta: In ancient times before the invention of soaps and hand wash, people used to put Azadirachta leaves in hot bathwater, this element has natural purifying properties and strong smell that gives you a clean and fresh feeling after use. The oil extracts of Azadirachta are also very powerful and often used in organic hand washes.
Lemon: Lemon contains vitamin C, which helps to increase immunity and helps us fight communal diseases.
Honey: Honey is not just a natural sweetener but can also help to fight skin infections and prevent us from germs like ringworm. Honey has a rich, smooth texture that also moisturises your hands while gently killing the bacteria.
Cinnamon: The cinnamon is extracted from the inner bark of a tree called Cinnamomum and has powerful medicinal properties. The cinnamon spice has a strong smell and is loaded with antioxidants. It has anti-inflammatory properties that prevent your skin from redness. It contains cinnamaldehyde which helps to prevent fungal and bacterial infections. It can restrict the growth of certain bacteria like Salmonella and Listeria.
Coconut Oil: Coconut oil is a natural moisturiser and consists of essential fatty acids that have antioxidants and medicinal properties. It consists of Caprylic and Lauric acid, which together help in preventing dermatitis and provide an-inflammatory properties.
Tea Tree Oil: Tea tree oil is extracted from the leaves of tea trees. The natural chemicals in tea tree oil help to kill bacteria and fungus. When applied on the skin they prevent infections caused by ringworms, lice, scabies and nail infections.
Ginger: Ginger is used to aid recovery from cold or flu. It has natural anti-inflammatory properties and prevents infections due to its natural antioxidants and anti-viral properties.
Aloe vera: This natural soothing agent is used on the skin to cure burns and has many medicinal properties. It is abundant in vitamins, amino acids and antioxidants and widely used in pharmaceutical products. Aloe vera contains polyphenols which are very powerful compounds that prevent the growth of certain bacteria. It is also suitable for topical use due to its nourishing and moisturising properties that leave your hands soft after each wash.
Chamomile: Chamomile is a medicinal plant that can help us to fight synthetic microbial infections. The chamomile flower has natural antibacterial properties, and research shows that it is more powerful than chemically synthesised antiseptics, so it is recommended that you use the organic hand wash with chamomile flower extracts.
Fennel extract: Fennel extract has powerful medicinal properties and contains Vitamin C and antioxidants. It helps to prevent the growth of bacteria like Candida and Escherichia and helps to fight infections. It contains quercetin that can help to reduce inflammation and redness of the skin.
Thyme essential oil: Thyme oil contains Thymol which is a terpene that has antimicrobial properties. The oil also has anti-fungal properties that can help to fight dermatitis and Eczema. It fights infection caused by Yeast and prevents overgrowth of Candida, a type of yeast commonly found on the surface of the human body.
Apple cider vinegar: Apple cider vinegar is citrusy and contains natural acids that have antimicrobial properties. It contains 5-6 per cent acetic acid that kills pathogens and bacteria. It is useful in treating nail fungus, ear infections and lice. It also contains many enzymes, good bacteria and proteins that nourish our skin.
Basil: Basil is a medicinal herb that prevents worm infections and skin infections. It is rich in antioxidants and has a pleasant citrusy smell. Basil also contains Potassium and vitamins that purify the air and keep the surroundings clean. Basil oil can also help to fight inflammation and cure swelling.
How to use organic antibacterial hand wash?
It is important that you scrub your hands properly with your organic antibacterial hand wash for at least 40 seconds every time you use it for effective action. The scrubbing in circular motion not only helps to apply the hand wash evenly but also improves blood circulation and gives you a natural detox from within. The hand wash is more effective if used with distilled or warm water.
So go ahead and ditch the traditional chemical-based hand wash made in labs, and switch to environment-friendly naturally made organic antimicrobial hand wash.