Germs are a natural part of life and they can actually build up your kid’s immune system, but you might want to consider giving these six things a quick cleaning every once in a while — after all, they are dirtier than a toilet seat:
1. Your cell phone
According to Live Science, your phone (or tablet) can actually carry up to 10 times more bacteria than your toilet. Surprised? One reason is because you clean the toilet frequently, but can you remember the last time you sanitized your phone?
You talk on the phone, take it grocery shopping, put it in the bottom of your purse and probably use it while you’re in the restroom. This can give your phone some serious bacteria, which is easily spread from person to person.
To make your phone cleaner than your toilet, all you need to do is to fill a spray bottle with a 1:1 solution of 70% rubbing alcohol and distilled water. Lightly spray your phone with the mixture and wipe it down with a microfiber cloth.
2. The kitchen sink
The sink is a place where bacteria thrive because it never gets disinfected as well as a toilet. According to WebMD, “Food particles from plates left to soak or rinsed from dishes on their way to the dishwasher can serve as a breeding ground for illness —causing bacteria, including E. coli and salmonella.”
While the sink might be a convenient place to give your kid a bath, it might actually make them dirtier than they were before. Before you bathe your child in the sink, make sure you take a few minutes to disinfect and thoroughly clean it.
3. The bathtub
You may be trying to get clean when you take a bath, but you’ll probably be better off with a shower. WebMD states, “A recent study found Staphylococcus bacteria in 26% of the tubs tested.”
But don’t freak out and stop bathing your baby quite yet. Just make sure to disinfect the tub after bath time and dry it with a clean towel, especially after you bathe your dog.
4. Their car seat
Between play dates and park visits, your child’s car seat probably isn’t the cleanest place in the world. In fact, according to Good Housekeeping, it’s probably dirtier than your toilet seat.
Avoid the car seat germs by regularly cleaning it, following the care recommendations in the instructions and wiping down the plastic parts with soap and water. When you can’t do this on a regular basis, give it a quick shake to eliminate crumbs and dirt that might be hiding in the crevices.
5. The floor
Your child probably spends a lot of time on the floor, whether they’re barely learning to crawl, throwing a tantrum or just napping. While you shouldn’t be too worried about them spending time on the ground, you should be cleaning your carpet on a regular basis.
According to Reader’s Digest, “Bacteria love munching on dead skin cells. Considering that the average person sheds about 1.5 million every hour, that turns your rugs into a fine dining experience when you add food particles, pet dander, pollen and other bits.” Yikes.
Vacuuming on a regular basis will prevent the bacteria from getting dangerous, but you should have your carpet professionally cleaned at least once a year.
6. The shopping cart
Oh, the struggles of shopping with little kids. It’s so much easier to stick your kid in the shopping cart seat, but you might want to think twice before you put them in there without wiping it down first.
If you think about how many people touch them every day (or how many babies put their mouths on the handles) it’s pretty disturbing. Lots of stores have disinfecting wipes near the front of the store, so wipe down that handle and seat before you put your baby in.
Although these items are covered in germs, your child will most likely be completely fine if you miss out on a weekly wipe down or vacuum. Just remember give everything a quick cleaning every once in a while and you’ll be good to go.