Recently updated on October 25th, 2022 at 11:32 am
People are washing their hands more than ever before right now. After all, there have been over 32 million cases of COVID-19 to date in the US! And washing our hands is a crucial way to eradicate germs and slow the virus’s spread.
But is there such a thing as “overwashing hands”? In other words, would we actually be doing more harm than good by going overboard with the hand soap?
It’s a definite possibility. Keep reading to find out why!
1. It Removes the Healthy Oils
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As you know, washing your hands or using hand sanitizer is a crucial way to clear them of dirt and germs. But that’s not the only thing that disappears! We also eradicate healthy oils and good bacteria.
And we need both of those elements to keep our skin healthy and ward off germs, respectively. They provide an important barrier that protects us from ensuing problems. You may experience dry hands from overwashing and mild irritation, or even serious skin conditions (such as eczema and dermatitis).
2. Potential Immune System Struggles
Most people who wash their hands too much throughout the day are trying to do one thing: remove bacteria from them in an effort to prevent illness (either in themselves or spreading it to other people).
The irony’s that overwashed hands may end up harming your immune system! This is exactly what the so-called “hygiene hypothesis” states. By over-sanitizing, our bodies aren’t exposed to enough bacteria to learn how to fight it.
3. Future Generations May Suffer
Don’t worry, using hand sanitizer a hundred times a day isn’t going to have a negative impact on your grandkids! But it does feed into a wider issue around general over-cleanliness that could.
Remember, we need germs in our environment. In small doses, they help strengthen our immune systems, which makes our bodies more adept at fighting serious attacks in the future. But if we adopt a culture that champions the total avoidance of germs, our children may never get exposed to them!
4. Limited Impact
Anti-bacterial soaps aren’t as good at killing germs as they claim to be. Unlikely as it sounds, they’re actually better suited to cleaning countertops and things of that nature. Use them in excess, then, and the cons start to outweigh the pros!
In many cases, you’d be better off finding ways to keep bad bacteria off your body in the first place. Take dentists, for example…
They should, of course, wash their hands a lot throughout their working day. Yet they can limit the potential to pick up germs in the first place by wearing masks and gloves from Primo Dental Products or similar companies.
Avoid Overwashing Hands!
Don’t get us wrong:
Washing your hands is downright essential to killing bacteria and preventing the spread of illnesses (such as COVID-19). However, many of us are over washing hands and doing more harm than good in the process!
With any luck, the insights in this article will convince you to cut back. Want to read more articles on the important subject of personal hygiene? Browse the ‘Health’ section of the website now.