Miracle or Menace?

The debates rages. The question is how can we use Triclosan as an advantage?

One factor that continues to get lost in the mix is that the use of germicide in so many of our handsoaps and personal care products is killing ALL bacteria.  When will people realize that there is good bacteria?

Where can we find Triclosan? Everywhere.  It is in everything from hand sanitizers, antibacterial soaps and toothpaste, to shampoos, plastic toys, cosmetics and paint. It is also, apparently, in 75% of us. More specifically, it is in 75% of the urine samples tested by the CDC.

Ever heard of “6 Tribes of Bacteria?”  It’s an old article, but one worth reading.  Bacteria Thrive in Inner Elbow. I remember reading that article and having to look up “commensals”.  Much of that information is extremely relevant to today.

One area that gets left out of the debate is the effect that Triclosan has on our water system.  How?  Think about it.  This product that is very good at destroying bacteria is washed down the drains to our waste water treatment systems.  The majority of municipal plants treat the settled sewage liquor using aerobic biological processes. That means they use microbes to process the sewage… (microbes can be bacteria and fungus).  But we are so fouled up in our society we have made the word “bacteria” into something bad, bad, bad.

With the ever-increasing use of Triclosan in so many products, the long-term effect on our natural, good bacteria in water, in the dirt and on our skin will be devastating.  We have people who will chant all day long on the dangers of allowing the possible demise of a specific type of mouse that exists in a specific habitat.  I’m not saying that is all wrong… but when are we going to see the magnitude of the damage we are doing to our entire bacterial ecosystem?

Let’s start a campaign on building a healthier foundation at the microbial level.  We’ll can call it “Save our Bacteria”.  I’m afraid it’s not going to catch on.