Microbiologists have swab-tested a load of kids’ teddies and found more than 80% were contaminated with staphylococcus and almost 25% contained bacteria linked to faeces.
What’s more, owing to being dropped on the floor and being cuddled by
germ magnets small children they have the highest level of bacteria in the family laundry basket.
To make matters worse, nearly half of us unwittingly put teddies in the wash with contaminated things like dirty pants and one in five teddy bears have never been washed at all.
I shudder to think what ours contain.
All this has prompted Dettol to launch a Care for Your Bear campaign to raise awareness of the germs and bacteria found on soft toys. They very kindly sent me a bottle of their laundry cleanser, which you add to the wash and it kills 99.9% of bacteria, and which I actually already use (washing denim on a cold wash can’t be right without something to zap the germs, surely).
Apparently we should be washing soft toys regularly with laundry cleanser, either in the machine or a sponge bath, avoid cross contamination and then let them dry naturally.
Crikey. I scanned BB’s teddies and my eyes fell on Tenderheart, my old Care Bear which I got for my 7th birthday in 1987 and which BB loves (do you remember the red heart on their bum to prove it was ‘real’?)
Has she ever been washed?
I asked my mum, and this is what she said: ‘I don’t specifically remember doing so, certainly not ‘properly’ in the washing machine. Possibly the odd sponge to remove the most offensive stuff.’
Tenderheart is now going for a long overdue spin…
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