Skip to main content

Triclosan is an active antimicrobial agent.  Triclosan is regulated by both the FDA, where it is registered as a drug, and the EPA, where it is registered it as a pesticide. It is likely that you have frequent contact with triclosan.

Triclosan may be found in items used by consumers, such as hand soaps, body washes, toothpastes, mouthwashes, acne medications, deodorants, and wound disinfection solutions. It also has commercial and industrial uses and may be incorporated into ice-making equipment and applied directly to commercial HVAC coils to prevent microbial growth. It may also be found in fabrics, vinyl, plastics (including toys, toothbrushes, and kitchen utensils), textiles (footwear, clothing), carpeting, and a wide variety of other products.

Results of recent studies are alarming, to the point that both the FDA and the EPA are currently reviewing the use of triclosan. From the EPA

Given the rapidly developing scientific database for triclosan, the Agency intends to accelerate the schedule for the registration review process for this chemical. Currently, the Agency intends to begin that process in 2013, ten years earlier than originally planned.
From the FDA
In light of questions raised by recent animal studies of triclosan, FDA is reviewing all of the available evidence on this ingredient’s safety in consumer products. FDA will communicate the findings of its review to the public in winter 2012.
What we do know so far is that studies on animals have shown that triclosan disrupts thyroid and testosterone hormones and impairs contraction of heart muscle cells and skeletal muscle fiber cells. There is real concern that the use of triclosan may contribute to making bacteria resistant to antibiotics. Many uses of triclosan result in it being washed down the drain. Even when wastewater is treated it still contains triclosan and when the wastewater is released to the environment, sunlight converts some of the triclosan (and related compounds) into dioxins.
[O]ver the last 30 years, the levels of the four dioxins derived from triclosan have risen by 200 to 300 percent, while levels of all the other dioxins have dropped by 73 to 90 percent.
As pointed out by the FDA, there is no evidence that those antibacterial soaps and body washes which contain triclosan provide any extra health benefits over plain soap and water. Until the FDA and EPA make their determinations, if you want to use an "antibacterial" soap choose one that doesn't contain triclosan. Personally, I am going to avoid triclosan every chance I get.

Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags


More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site