Fact: Kids love stuffed toys. And it isn’t hard to see why. They are soft and lightweight; parents also like them because they are considered safe for children.
But today we want to delve a little deeper into the nature of your child’s favourite soft toy because it is not as safe as it appears.
The truth is that if used improperly, stuffed toys present hidden dangers that threaten your child’s health and in cases it can even turn fatal. Let us start reviewing some of the bad effects that these soft toys can have.
The cute eyes and nose of your baby’s teddy bear can be dangerous if they are plastic. Those pieces are not appropriate for children under 3-years-old due to the risk of choking.
The best toys for that age range will have the eyes, nose and other features properly stitched or printed.
Bacteria and germs
Soft toys are perfect havens for bacteria and germs if they are not washed often. Just think of how many times you’ve seen the toy laying on the ground or dragged along in a playground. It also may be carried to school or to friend’s houses, and in each place, it is exposed to all kinds of pathogens via air or by being in contact with hard surfaces.
To be safe, it is advised to wash the stuffed toys in hot water at least once a week, depending on how dirty it may become.
Sudden infant death syndrome
According to the Nemours Foundation, “Sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS) is the sudden and unexplained death of a baby younger than 1-year-old. Most SIDS deaths are associated with sleep, which is why it’s sometimes still called crib death.”
And it is related to stuffed toys because they pose a risk especially for infants younger than 12 months. The problem for them is that having these toys in their cribs while they sleep could cause carbon dioxide to pool in the infant’s sleep area and interfere with his breathing.
As mentioned before, the causes of SIDS are unknown, however, researchers have linked it to stuffed toys. Better be very careful when leaving them inside your baby’s crib.
Read more about: Common indoor air pollutants
Avoid the possible bad consequences of your child’s favourite toy by ensuring that his collection only contains toys designed for her age, also wash them frequently and keep them well-organised.