dishwands because I find them awkward to use and they tend to leak all over. It's a matter of personal preference though. It does have a sponge on the end but because it is always full of soap, it would seem to be safe. As a precaution, I would recommend removing the sponge, rinsing as much soap out as possible and putting it in the microwave (wet) for about 1 to 2 minutes. The heat will kill any bacteria that might be lurking in the sponge. Be careful removing it from the microwave. It will be hot!!
Sponges are okay, like my nasty scrubber above for rinsing dishes off to put in the dishwasher. I do not recommend using them to wipe any surfaces. If you absolutely prefer to use a sponge, sanitize it by putting it in the microwave (wet) for 1 to 2 minutes to kill any germs growing in it. Be careful taking it out as it will be very hot! It can also be sanitized in the dishwasher but it grosses me out to have it next to the dishes (even if it is sanitized).