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A 31-year-old female asked:

i have ocd and wash my hands and face several times a day with soap containing sodium laureth sulfate. can this chemical affect my unborn baby?

2 doctor answers6 doctors weighed in
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 44 years experience
No: There was a crooked internet scare about sodium laureth sulfate a while back, by some folks promoting their own brand of soap. Your baby's in no danger from this. Overcoming ocd is a lifetime struggle and now that you will be a mother, this is all the more reason to work to be the most effective human being that you can be.
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Pathology 44 years experience
Provided original answer
I'm also proud that you asked what must have been a difficult question. My thoughts will be with you as you enter this new, challenging phase of your life. The attention to detail and awareness to the feelings of others will be assets as a parent, and hopefully the disabling and unwanted thoughts will be manageable as you learn and practice. Don't get discouraged. Best wishes.
Mar 16, 2013
Dr. Ana Adelstein
Clinical Psychology 27 years experience
Big opportunity!: As colleagues answered, this soap won't hurt your baby. But this is a great time to consider getting treatment for ur ocd so ur child will grow up seeing u in control of it! the "gold standard" treatment is behavioral: it's called exposure & response prevention. Find an ocd expert to help. See resources on the international ocd foundation website: www.Ocfoundation.Org. Meds can be big help too.

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Last updated Nov 27, 2017

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