Regular Soap and How it Works

Regular Soap and How it Works
Q:
Regular Soap and How it Works

How does regular soap work?

A:

Dr. Greene’s Answer:

Soap isn’t designed to kill bacteria, but to lift dirt off of surfaces so that it can easily be rinsed away. This is what happens when people wash their hands with soap. The scrubbing action helps to release dirt and oils that are on the surface of skin, and soap picks up the dirt and carries it away during rinsing.

More Information:

Alcohol-based Hand Sanitizers and Antibacterial Soaps
Hand Washing – Good Germs – Super Germs
Soap and Water or Alcohol-based Hand Sanitizers?
What Hand Hygiene Product Should I Use?

Reviewed by: Khanh-Van Le-Bucklin, Rebecca Hicks
Last reviewed: April 24, 2008
Dr. Alan Greene

Article written by

Dr. Greene is the founder of DrGreene.com (cited by the AMA as “the pioneer physician Web site”), a practicing pediatrician, father of four, & author of Raising Baby Green & Feeding Baby Green. He appears frequently in the media including such venues as the The New York Times, the TODAY Show, Good Morning America, & the Dr. Oz Show.

 

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