MIAMI (CBSMiami) — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is banning more than a dozen chemicals used in antibacterial soaps.
The administration says manufacturers have failed to prove they’re safe for long-term daily use and that they are more effective than plain soap and water when it comes to preventing illness and the spread of infections.
“Consumers may think antibacterial washes are more effective at preventing the spread of germs, but we have no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water,” said Janet Woodcock, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research (CDER). “In fact, some data suggests that antibacterial ingredients may do more harm than good over the long-term.”
The ban primarily targets two once common ingredients – triclosan and triclocarban – which some research has found could cause bacterial resistance or hormonal effects.
According to the FDA, some manufacturers have already taken out the ingredients from their products.
The ban comes more than 40 years after Congress asked the agency to evaluate triclosan and other ingredients.