A Safe Toy is a Clean Toy – Simple Tips and Tricks

toy safety awarenessWhether you are a parent, or just have little ones on your holiday shopping list, you are probably aware that December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month. LeBauer HealthCare celebrates this initiative and works hard to promote mindful giving all year long. Considering your child’s age and abilities when buying toys can greatly decrease their chances of injury, preventing dreaded ER trips during the holiday season. In our last blog post, we highlighted several points to consider while shopping, and today we’ll expand on that by discussing the importance of keeping toys clean. With flu season in full swing, you’ll want to take note of these simple tricks.

Make Good Use of Your Household Appliances

Cleaning each toy by hand can take a big chunk of time. Many people forget that your appliances can be utilized for cleaning more than laundry and dishes. For plush toys, doll clothes and other soft items, read the label to determine if machine washing is recommended. Toss appropriate items in a mesh laundry bag and let the machine do the work. For plastic items and other hard toys, use the dishwasher to keep germs at bay. Remember to turn the heat dry setting off.

Clean With Care

When wiping down toys, always use several cloths or different areas of one large cloth. If you are wiping toy after toy with the same cleaning surface, your work may be counterproductive. Additionally, it is important to avoid harsh cleaning solutions, as toys always end up in the mouths of little ones. Here is a great recipe for a non-toxic cleaning solution:

  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup white vinegar
  • 2-3 drops of lemon juice or essential oil

This recipe is great to keep on hand, but heavy-duty sanitizing may require properly diluted bleach or another sanitizing product. Just be sure to check labels for solutions considered non-toxic.

Don’t Neglect Electronics

With the digital age, many popular toys are electronic or battery powered. Though it may be a bit more challenging, is equally important to clean these items. Before cleaning an electronic toy, remove any batteries or parts that may be damaged or corroded. Next, wipe every surface with a solution of dish soap and water. If desired, electronics can be sanitized with a household disinfectant, but remember to remove any excess solution before handing the toy back over to little ones.

We hope these tips will help prevent colds and flu in your household. If you have other tips for keeping toys clean and safe, please share them in our comments section!

Happy cleaning and happy holidays from the LeBauer HealthCare team!

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