Chelsea Wicks, MD, pediatrician, Renown Medical Group Pediatrics
It is very important for all of us to wash our hands frequently. We use our hands for everything and often end up touching our faces making it easy to transfer germs from surfaces to our airway and gastrointestinal tract.
There have been studies done recently showing that by being overly careful about germs, we may be increasing our risk for allergies because our body is not “seeing” these organisms and mounting normal responses.
This all being said, I think it is important for all of us to wash our hands before handling food and after using the restroom. Sanitizers usually work just as well, if not better than soap and water in most situations. They are great for on the go and most are safe to use for kids.
I would recommend avoiding the scented sanitizers as there have been reports of children licking it thinking it smells and tastes good, but can be toxic to ingest.
If you have any questions about washing your hands or hand sanitizers ask your doctor or one of ours on the Ask Our Experts tab on this page.