Does your child have one a huge stuffed animal collection? Perhaps they even have one or two favorites they take everywhere. Stuffed animals are cute, and make great cuddle buddies for your children. But if your child has allergies, stuffed animals may be causing a big problem. Allergens love to hide out in soft fibers. Some of their favorite spots are in carpets, bedding, soft furniture and…..stuffed animals. Dust mites in particular are often found in large quantities in stuffed animals. A giant stuffed animal collection can easily gather enough allergens to cause sniffling, sneezing and other allergy symptoms. In order to keep your child healthy some measures may need to be taken. If your stuffed-animal loving son or daughter begins showing signs of allergies, it’s important you take the following actions.
- Limit Stuffed Animals to a Few Favorites - Cutting your child’s collection down to a few favorite stuffed animals will help decrease allergens significantly. It will also make it much easier for you to wash their plush friends the less there are. Your son or daughter may have a hard time saying goodbye to their stuffed animals, no matter how many there are. But it’s important you explain to them having too many can make them sick.
- Wash or Freeze - If you’ve never washed your child’s stuffed animals, now is the time to start. Washing in hot water will offer the best results for killing dust mites and eliminating other allergens. If a stuffed animal cannot be washed you can also freeze it to eliminate allergens. Simply place the stuffed animal in a zip-loc bag and leave it in the freezer overnight.
- Store Elsewhere - Consider storing stuffed animals somewhere in the house other than your child’s room. Even if your child only has a few stuffed animals, allergens can still gather. Since your child spends the most time in their room they are more vulnerable to allergen exposure.
- Protect the Bed - Even after you cut your child’s collection down or relocated the stuffed animals, allergens could still be lingering in your child’s bedroom and in their mattress. By using allergen protective bedding, such as mattress and pillow protectors, you will keep all allergens locked tight within the mattresses and pillows, preventing your child from breathing them in while they sleep.
One or two special animals won’t do any harm as long as you’re keeping them allergy free! But a whole pile could pose a problem. It’s important to explain to your children that decreasing their stuffed animals is helping them stay healthy. Have you ever had problems with your children’s allergy symptoms in relation to stuffed animals?