Posted on June 1st, 2020
As parents, we work hard to keep our kids healthy and happy. We encourage regular exercise, cook nutritious meals and insist on at least eight hours of sleep each night. We also strive to keep our kids (and their possessions) germ-free by instilling good hand-washing habits and keeping a clean, tidy house. Still, there’s one facet of hygiene that even the most careful parents often overlook when doing the housekeeping: Regularly cleaning their child’s toys. Without frequent sanitizing, even strictly indoor toys can become hotbeds for viruses, bacteria, and mold, regardless of whether or not they look visibly dirty. According to WebMD, sharing toys is one of the most common ways that kids spread viruses to one another.
Remember that if you would rather not spend your day cleaning, you can get in touch with a trustworthy cleaning team from Edmond, OK or from the nearby area. These teams have experience in disinfecting kid’s toys so you don’t need to worry about it yourself.
How Often Should You Clean Your Child’s Toys?
The proper cleaning protocol for toys varies, depending on your child’s age, how frequently a toy is played with and what type of material a toy is made of. Toys intended for babies and toddlers need to be cleaned rigorously and often because kids in this age group like to place items in their mouths. Furthermore, their immune systems are still developing, so they’re more susceptible to illness than older kids or adults. If your child is under the age of four, you should clean his favorite toys at least once every two to three days to keep him safe. For older children, the guidelines below are usually sufficient to prevent the growth of mold and bacteria:
- Hard plastic toys should be sanitized at least once a week.
- Plush toys may be damaged by frequent washing, so it’s generally recommended that you launder these toys just once every two weeks.
- Electronics (and toys with electronic components) should be sanitized once a week, or every few days for high-touch items.
- If your child catches a cold or flu, try to sanitize his most-used toys every day and sanitize all of his toys again as soon as he feels better. You should also deep-clean the rest of your home to stop the virus spreading to other family members or guests.
What’s the Best Way to Clean and Disinfect Toys?
When washing toys, it’s important to be aware that mild disinfectants (like vinegar and lemon juice) aren’t strong enough to completely protect kids from germs. The best way to clean and sanitize toys is to wash them thoroughly with hot soapy water and when that isn’t possible, use a disinfectant that’s registered with the EPA. To make the task of cleaning toys easier, we suggest using the following sanitizing techniques:
Hard Plastic Toys:
Toys that are made of solid plastic can usually be washed in the dishwasher. To clean these toys, place them on the top rack, run them through a normal hot-water cycle and dry them off with a towel as soon as they’re cool to the touch.
If you’re not sure whether a hard-plastic toy is heat-safe or not, don’t risk putting it in the dishwasher. Instead, wet a cloth with a 3% hydrogen peroxide solution and thoroughly scrub every part of the toy. If the toy’s dye starts to run, use a disinfectant wipe instead. Before you give the toy back to your child, run it under cool water and dry it with a towel to remove any residue.
Before you put a plush toy in the washing machine, check its care label to make sure it’s machine washable. If it is, you should place the toy in a pillow case to protect it (knot the top of the case to keep the toy inside) and launder it with the following settings: Gentle cycle, warm water, slow spin speed. To dry the toy, place it in the clothes dryer (without removing the protective pillowcase) and dry it on a low heat setting.
Toys that can’t be machine-washed will require hand washing. To hand-wash a delicate toy, soak a cloth in warm, soapy water and gently scrub the toy’s exterior until it’s damp but not soaking wet. Be careful to avoid getting any fragile or electronic parts, like battery packs, wet during washing. When you’re done, let the toy air-dry.
It’s not uncommon for plush toys to come into contact with food or liquids in between laundering sessions. To keep these toys looking and smelling like new (without causing needless wear and tear), use a spot remover to prevent stains rather than over-laundering the toy. You can also lightly mist plush toys with a disinfectant spray every week to keep them germ-free.
Electronic components can be very fragile, so you should take extra care when sanitizing remote-control vehicles, kids’ tablets and other toys that use electricity. Before you clean an electronic toy, turn it off and remove the batteries (if possible). Then, use rubbing alcohol or a disinfectant wipe to carefully sanitize each part of the toy, while paying special attention to high-touch areas like buttons and touch screens. Before you give the toy back to your child, wipe it down again with a damp cloth and towel-dry it.
If you need a top rated house cleaner in Edmond or nearby, please get in touch!
Cleaning up after kids is a full-time job, especially right now: With many children across the country currently home from school, parents are scrubbing, sweeping, and tidying for hours every week – and still struggling to keep up. If you’re feeling overwhelmed, the team at HappyCleans of Oklahoma City can help you keep your home clean and hygienic. Our flexible, affordable, professional maid services, will free up your time without breaking your budget, letting you get back to the hard work of parenting or maybe take a break and relax for the day at Arcadia Lake.