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How to clean toys and stop your kids getting sick

With a baby at home, we try to take extra caution when it's about cleanliness. We keep our houses clean, the floor gets mopping many times and bed-sheet gets changing timely. We sanitize baby clothes after washing with detergent. We use good quality dish wash to keep germs away from baby's feeding utensils. But we often overlook baby's toys. Babies are constantly touching toys, putting their hands over them (whether clean or dirty) and many times take toys in their mouths so they can pick up germs and diseases easily. Washing and disinfecting toys help reduce the spread of germs, especially when many children are together. This means we can reduce the possibility of our babies getting sick by keeping baby's toys clean.

There are two basic steps to cleaning baby toys: 
1. Cleaning: Most simple way of cleaning toys. Scrubbing with soap and warm water can reduce germs from the toys. It also removes the grease and grime.
2. Sanitizing: A sanitizing solution is needed for this step. It can kill most of the dangerous germs. However, toy surface needs to be cleaned before it's sanitized, since germs can hide in the form of grease and grime. Diluted liquid chlorine bleach can be used for this method. If you don't prefer a chemical solution, a natural sanitizing solution is water mixed with vinegar and baking soda.

Can all the toys be cleaned with the same method? 
The answer is, it depends on the type of toy. Some of the toys can be cleaned with simple hand washing. Other may need a mild way of cleaning. Methods also vary based on the size and material of the toy.

How often should toys need cleaning and sanitizing?
You don't need to drive yourself crazy in cleaning your baby's toys every moment. But it's good to clean toys at certain times:
  • When you notice they're soiled, for example, when food is over of inside it.
  • When your baby is recovering from sicknesses like diarrhoea or cold/flue.
  • After other kids visit your home or when another kid has put your baby's toys in his/her mouth.
  • On a regular basis, say, at the end of every month.
    Here are few instructions which you can follow for cleaning specific type of toy:

    Small plastic toys:
    • You can wash plastic toys in the sink/tub with a clean sponge, soap and warm water. Make sure you scrub off any dried food, grease and grime. 
    • After washing is done, sanitize the toys by dipping them in the sanitizing solution, and let them dry in airy space.
    • For toys with batteries, clean the outside surface with soap and water, then wipe with the sanitizing solution and let air-dry.
    • Use a bottle brush to clean small spaces in toys like Legos, where hands washing can't do a perfect cleaning. For example, for bath toys, fill the tub with 3 - 4 inches of water, add 1 cup vinegar and soak for about 30 minutes before rinsing. However, if any toy is waterlogged with a slimy grime on the inside, it's time to discard that toy and get a new one.

    Large plastic, metal or wooden toys:
    Clean their surface with soap and water, then wipe with the sanitizing solution and let them dry in airy space.

    Fabric toys:
    • Wash in the washing machine with laundry soap and hot water. Let them dry in airy space or under the sun. A reality is less you wash fabric toys, the longer they look new. 

    Cheat help:
    • You can use baby wipes for cleaning toy surface if it's been dropped in the dirt.
    • Depending upon the quality of the toy, you can sterilize toys in hot boiling water just like feeding bottles. 
    • Use an old toothbrush for cleaning corners and the inner surface of toys. 
    • If you are not sure about the quality of the toy, don't put it inside washing machine. Do hand washing for cleaning it. 
    At the end of the day, all we need is our babies smiling and doing well. Although we take care of everything which is any way related to their health, still we miss few things which can bring not-so-good moments for our babies.Babies are like little explorers desperately seeking out new experiences and in this very thing, their toys can get dirty. Cleaning baby toys is an essential stuff of parenting which prevents them from many germs and harmful bacteria. 

    This blog was first posted here by me: https://www.mycity4kids.com/parenting/cooperation-communication-and-affection-thee-keys-of-parenting/article/do-you-clean-your-kids-toys

    (blogs I'm mentioning here: thanks to their writers)
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    Comments

    1. great tips .. I haven't been this religious in cleaning their toys .. but u have detailed the cleaning procedure well .. will keep them in mind .. :) thanks for sharing

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    2. Some useful tips here. I am sure a lot of moms will benefit from these tips as children are always mouthing toys and falling sick.

      ReplyDelete
    3. This is an essential baby routine generally overlooked.A timely reminder.

      ReplyDelete
    4. This is such a big problem how to stop then from putting all things in mouth..cleaning proper is really good.thanks for sharing

      ReplyDelete
    5. some really helpful tips for moms of teething toddlers ..i think i went mad while my son started teething wish i had come across this earlier

      ReplyDelete
    6. These are some really helpful tips for mommies. A lot of mommies will benefit from these.

      ReplyDelete
    7. This is so true. We hardly ever think of cleaning babies toys unless it is really filthy. But toys are most used and get very dirty. I will keep your tips in mind

      ReplyDelete
    8. Cleaning toys is a task specially stuffed ones. You have given great tips and pointers. Thanks for sharing

      ReplyDelete
    9. These are some great tips to keep your kids clean. It's important as they put it in their mouth most of the time.

      ReplyDelete
    10. I like the tricks and natural sanitizing solution idea.

      ReplyDelete
    11. Very true. We often tend to overlook the cleaning of baby's toys which results in baby falling sick. Maintaining the hygiene of baby's toys is also very important.

      ReplyDelete
    12. We mostly prefer using warm water for cleaning the toys as it immediately kill the germs . All the soft toys are laundered on a weekly basis and the other toys are thoroughly wiped

      ReplyDelete
    13. Extremely informative and important post this is. Most of us do not really care about the toys as much as everything else around the baby.

      ReplyDelete
    14. To make a confession, i have not been very regular in cleaning up my kids toys. But the good part is that my elder one is now almost 5 and he cleans up his own toys at regular intervals himself. But you have provided good and workable tips to clean up the toys.

      ReplyDelete

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