Study: 100% of sippy cups and bath toys have bacteria, mold and feces

Written by |

Parents with young kids were up in arms this past February when disgusting photos of one Montreal dad’s sippy cup went viral. The photos clearly showed mold growing in the

Turns out that kind of mold — and other grosser stuff like feces and bacteria — is all too common on kids’ sippy cups and bath toys.

Read more: Moldy sippy cups have parents disgusted and angry

Germs are unavoidable if you have young children

An ABC News investigation found found bacteria and mold growing on 100% of the products tested in a new study conducted by Dr. Susan Whittier, a New York microbiologist.

Whittier analyzed more than 50 different sippy cups and bath toys sent in by parents. She specifically picks those two kinds of products because theyr’e constantly exposed to water and typically stay damp for a long time.

The bath toys she tested were made of rubber, foam, and plastic. Those made of rubber were typically found to be the dirtiest.

When it comes to the sippy cups, there’s even more disturbing news. Fecal matter was found on more than 25% of cups Whittier tested!

How concerned should you be?

Despite the gross-out factor, the good news is that none of this stuff will hurt a child with a normal immune system.

Yet there are two important caveats here: First, a skin infection could result if any bacteria enters the skin through a cut.

Second, there is the risk of an allergic reaction. ‘If they were to ingest that, it’s unpredictable,’ Whittier warned. 


So what’s a parent to do? ABC News recommends bath toys be cleaned with disinfectant wipes at least once a week. Sippy cups, meanwhile, should be disassembled and cleaned in the dishwasher on high heat after each use.

Traveling with toddlers this summer? Avoid touching this stuff on the plane says there are seven things you shouldn’t touch on an airplane. Armrests tops the list of things to avoid.

Also on the list — tray tables. A 2007 study revealed four in six tray tables tested positive for MRSA bacteria and noroviruses.

Rounding out the tally of things you shouldn’t touch on a plane: The inside door handle of the restroom, the restroom faucet handles, the toilet flushing button, blankets and the toilet seat.

The cleanest thing of all on an airplane may come as a surprise: It’s apparently the seatbelt buckle!

In the airport itself, the dirtiest thing you can touch is the button on the drinking fountain. It is 18 times more germy than the lock on the bathroom stall in the airport terminal. Yuck!

Read more: 7 things to avoid touching on an airplane

Welcome bonuses can be a great way to boost the value of a credit card. Best Credit Card Sign-up Bonuses for 2023 - Team Clark spent hours reviewing the market for credit card sign-up bonuses and evaluated them according to the guidelines for usage set by money expert Clark Howard. Clark believes credit cards with exorbitant annual fees are a bad idea for most…
Team Clark's cell phone expert ranks the best cell phone plans and deals. Best Cell Phone Plans in 2023: The Cheapest Plan for Every Need - Team Clark ranks the best cell phone plans and deals! See our favorites for unlimited data, families and cheap plans starting at $10/month.
  • Show Comments Hide Comments