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There are no two ways to look at the fact that babies and kids are messy little humans who are constantly exploring new places and items around the house. If you have a baby or a toddler around the house then you know that there’s always soiled diapers, muddy spots from outdoor playing, dirty sheets, spit-up on your clothes…the list is actually endless! This only means that your house contains tons of germs whether you are a clean-freak or not! Let’s look at the top “germy” places around your house and the “germiest” kids’ items.
If you have a baby or a toddler around the house then you know that there’s always soiled diapers, muddy spots from outdoor playing, dirty sheets, spit-up on your clothes…the list is actually endless! Although the mess that kids make is inevitable, all moms want to ensure that their precious little ones are free from infection caused by these pesky germs. For your benefit, let’s look at the items, toys, and places that your child comes in contact with every day and just how “germy” they are. This will help you keep these spots clean and protect your little ones from infections and diseases.
4 Germiest Places in Your Kids’ Bedroom
On doing in-depth research we found that items in bedrooms had more germs than any other room. One surprising finding was that those board books our kids use all the time actually had a high concentration of germs that were the same germs contributing to illnesses such as sinusitis and pneumonia! Apart from these, the following are the germiest spots in your kids’ bedroom.
1. Changing Table
The place you change your baby’s poopy diapers and pee filled ones too is obviously a breeding hotspot for germs like E. Coli Bacteria. Use a non-toxic disinfecting wipe to clean it down after every use.
2. Stuffed Toys
Soft, cuddly toys are almost like sponges when it comes to attracting and retaining germs. To keep them as clean as you can, wash them every 3 weeks in hot water and dry them on high heat to kill all the germs.
3. Rug/ Carpet
Like soft toys, carpets and rugs too retain germs. Vacuum your carpets or rugs at least 4 times a week.
We left this one for the last, but it’s no surprise that toys are the germiest items around, especially since your baby touches them every day, and so do you. These go into the mouth, on the floor and everywhere else. Rubber toys need to be wiped down with a disinfecting wipe with no toxic matter. Plastic toys too can be cleaned this way.That settles the top germy spots in your child’s room but what about other items your child ends up touching? Surely you want to know what they are! Some of these will surprise you.
A study on germiest items took on a more fun take by first asking mums what they THOUGHT were the germiest items and then the actual ones. So let’s have a look at them already!
The TOP 10 Germiest Items Your Child Touches
1. Prediction – Television Remote
Actual- Strollers and prams
The Reason: Most strollers and prams are kept in storage when not in use, which means that they are more likely to experience changes in humidity and temperature in these closed spaces. This creates the perfect environment for germs to breed.
Germ Present: Streptococci bacteria, which can causes strep throat, pink eye and meningitis.
2. Prediction – Cellphone
Actual – Sippy Cup/ Pacifier
The Reason: Pacifiers have 1.5 times more germs than a toilet seat – disgusting right? We tend to wipe pacifiers on our shirt when it falls to the ground, which obviously picks up germs. Clean sippy cups and pacifiers well before use.
Germ Present: E.coli bacteria and salmonella (causes typhoid fever, food poisoning, gastroenteritis)
3. Prediction- Diaper Bag
Actual- Soft Toys
The Reason: As mentioned above, soft toys are like sponges that soak and retain harmful germs. Apart from germ colonies these toys also contain dust mites and allergens causing respiratory problems.
Germ Present: Listeria which causes food poisoning.
4. Prediction- Pacifier
Actual- Diaper Bag
The Reason: Diaper bags carry EVERYTHING you need for the day and the night (and for travel). This means that you are going to have your hands in and out of this bag through the day. Of course, you can’t be sanitizing it every time you reach in for something, right?
Germ Present: Pertussis, the germ that leads to whooping cough
5. Prediction- Car Keys
Actual- Television Remote
The Reason: Remotes are not just favourites with your furry pets chewing on them, babies love putting them in the mouth as well. We guess all those little rubber buttons are the best chewy toys!
Germ Present: Faecal bacteria which can cause severe tummy problems.
6. Prediction- Plastic Toy
Actual- Plastic Toy
The Reason: Moms got this prediction right! Of course toys have tons of germs breeding on them!
Germ Present: E.coli bacteria which causes severe intestine illnesses.
Watch this: How to Clean Your Child’s Germy Toys with All-Natural Solutions
7. Prediction- Soft Toys
Actual – Board Book
The Reason: Board books, especially with buttons and music, are touched often and so are great carriers and stores of germs, especially the ones that cause sinus infections.
Germ Present: Moraxella which causes bronchitis.
8. Prediction- Stroller
Actual- Bedroom door knobs and handles
The Reason: Of course, as we’ve seen above, where there are frequent cases of hands touching an object, there are germs. Doorknobs are touched multiple times every day.
Germ Present: E.coli Bacteria
9. Prediction – Door Knob
The Reason: While it is surprising that cellphones are ranked 9th, it is not surprising that they are even on this list. Most of us cannot get our hands off our phones, and naturally, our babies are equally intrigued by them.
Germ Present: E.Coli bacteria, influenza and MRSA (the germ that causes skin infections)
10. Prediction – Board Book
Actual- Car Keys
The Reason: We keep dangling things like car keys in front of babies to stimulate their senses. It is no wonder that our little ones reach out for them and maybe even manage to get them into their mouths. No one really bothers to wipe down car keys, so these pose a risk of germs from outdoors entering your little one’s body.
Germ Present: Practically any bacteria or virus that thrives outdoors!
How To Avoid Germs Around The House
While we know that germs will thrive anyway, what does a worried mum do to disinfect the house against these germs?
Duh! But what we mean by cleaning is deep clean! Remove as much dirt and debris from all surfaces by scrubbing and washing with solutions and soap. While this won’t ensure that all germs are removed, it will reduce the concentration of germs left around the house significantly by eliminating what they eat and thrive on.
To disinfect means to destroy by eliminating the microorganisms and germs that cause and spread disease. If you are unsure of how to disinfect your home you can use a non-toxic disinfectant around your house to get rid of these harmful germs. Disinfecting wipes are great for cleaning everyday items like changing tables and toys. Please make sure they are NON-TOXIC.
Sanitizers are not only for the woman who likes to ensure that her hands are clean before and after she touches any surface, but sanitizers are also great for your home. These may not kill viruses but they will definitely get rid of a lot of other germs, especially on your child’s high chair, table or on pacifiers.
While sanitation and cleaning are absolutely necessary, remember that a certain amount of exposure to germs and messy areas helps build your baby’s immunity against tons of diseases. So protect your family by taking measure to keep the germs from spreading but don’t attempt to eliminate your kids’ exposure to dirt altogether.