Winter months are notorious for bringing on the germs. Cold weather means more time indoors passing around seasonal coughs and colds. Your toddler may have a new love of running around in their tiny baby booties but noses are running too.
And little ones still learning the basics are bound to share their boogers along with sharing toys.
While parents do their best to curb any grossness in the house, there are a few items that need special attention — all year long. Yes, probably right now.
Some of the biggest germ breeding offenders are hiding in plain sight. Even scarier… some are even in your toddlers room.
Help cut down on winter sick days by keeping these three items sanitized regularly.
Wondering about cleaning products safety? Like, is lysol safe for baby toys? What exactly is a safe disinfectant for cleaning toys?
No need to stress.
There are tons of great detergents, soaps and other cleaning solutions on the market today. In fact, this is a great time to be on the hunt for a brand that works for you since there is a lot of competition out there.
If you're a passionate DIYer, most items requiring surface sanitizing can actually be done with a water/vinegar mixture that is toxic free.
What does all that mean? Easier cleaning for you and more time to relax while cozying up indoors with your little snow bunny.
Humidifiers are a key winter life saver. Dry skin and stuffy noses can be nuisance to your sleepy tot. A humidifier in the mix is the best way to combat both issues.
But nothing breeds more bacteria than old sitting water. Water builds up in the base and the reservoir will inevitably develop a layer of fresh pink germs that will grow faster than you can “EW”.
Sitting mold then distributed throughout that room can cause harmful health issues and a much bigger cleaning project down the road.
Zap any accidental science projects by mixing equal parts water and vinegar to sit in the base of the humidifier. Start with one cup of each to sit for at least 90 minutes.
Next up, the reservoir. Fill the inside with at least 2 cups of white vinegar, no added water this round. You’ll want to be sure the vinegar reaches every inch, so go ahead and place the cap back on and give that thing a hearty shake for at least a minute or two.
The longer you let that vinegar work, the more time it has to loosen up any gunk inside.
Once complete a few minutes later, let the vinegar flow out through the nozzle.
When the base is ready to be emptied, wipe down everything with a vinegar soaked hand towel to seal the deal.
Another mold brew waiting to happen is in those adorable bath toys.
Chances are that splashing babe of yours will take turns chewing on those poor bathtime rubber duckies. And while the whole point of having bath toys is to make getting clean fun, don’t skip out on making sure these guys are clean and safe.
Much like the humidifier, toys that live in the bathtub are hanging out in a danger zone of sitting water. Don’t think this is possible? You can take this to a Google image search. Warning - it’s not pretty.
Cleaning with vinegar is another foolproof way to safely disinfect any residue that is bound to build up over time. And since this isn’t as big of a project as a multi piece humidifier, you can clean toys right in the baby tub.
If your little one has already graduated to the regular tub, a separate bucket or even in the sink will work just fine.
Try a half cup to every gallon of water and let the toys sit for at least an hour. Yup, that’s right - you can just forget about them.
When time is up, a thorough rinse and dry should do the trick.
If your toys can stand an extra hot bath, you can always add boiling toys to the menu to disinfect as well. Just be sure to keep an eye out that nothing melts!
This one is kind of a catch all but dont let that scare you off. In fact, treat this like a gentle reminder.
Gloves and mittens are serving at the frontlines this winter, so please treat them kindly with at least one thorough cleaning per week.
Trust, you do not want to know what is living in your pure faced little darling’s gloves after even one day out in the battlefield.
However, outerwear is often a forgotten item on the cleaning list. When arriving home, items are typically hung up, stashed away or thrown somewhere, only to be remembered the next morning.
A great tip here is to have two or three pairs of gloves to alternate daily. And luckily this category does not require as much planning when cleaning. Straight into the hamper for anything covering hands.
For winter coats, play it by ear. If your life is on the go and a daily braving of elements is normal, go for a weekly wash.
A best case scenario should include at least three washes per season. Worst case? Do not pack that thing up for the season without a wash. Do future you a big favor, please.
Toddlers are learning to work on their own, so that means hands on germy hard working baby shoes. It might be a good idea to do a weekly wipe down on those baby walking shoes that will be seeing the elements.
Baby boots are a different story, of course, Trekking through the snow and slush means they need a more diligent wipe down to keep germs at bay.
A simple non toxic disinfectant wipe will save you the trouble of having to get a fully suited up toddler back to the bathroom to wash shoe gunk off their hands. Keep a pack of these baby safe surface wipes where you store your shoes for easy access and another gentle reminder.