Plastic is a versatile material, but we all know that they’re not the safest; they take years to decompose, which generally makes them bad for the environment.
Now, according to experts, we have a new reason not to be fond of it. According to a Parent Herald story, there are viruses that typically survive on the surface of plastic toys that often result in children’s exposure.
“The type of virus found are known as enveloped viruses, which have a protective outer later that allows them to survive and infect other cells,” the report said. “Examples of such viruses include influenza and Coronaviruses such as SARS and MERS.”
Researchers used an enveloped bacteriophage to tested how long a virus could survive on a child’s plastic toy.
Then the virus-infested plastic was placed in a controlled humidity environment of either 40 or 60 percent.
Researchers found that particles of the virus remained present 24 hours after the toy was contaminated with a humidity of up to 60 percent.
“The virus was less stable after 10 hours of contamination when the humidity was at 40 percent. A 40 percent humidity level is more common in indoor environments.”
There is still a risk that children could become infected even if only particles of the virus remain on the surface of a toy.
Richard Bearden II, lead author of the study from Georgia State University, said that it’s unfortunate many people don’t think virus can come from inanimate objects; virus do not only come from other people.
According to Michigan State University, viruses can live on surfaces for week, and when a child touches it, it can transfer into their mouth, food or to other people.
In fact, a Daily Mail report said that there is an increased likelihood of viral contamination among shared toys in day care centers and doctor’s offices; toys found in common play areas in health care settings have even been dubbed as vehicles for outbreaks of viral illnesses.
“Children are vulnerable to contracting infectious disease because they put their hands and foreign objects in their mouths,” said Richard Bearden. He also explains that children’s immune systems are not fully developed.”
READ: 8 harmless things that can harm your children
If you have any insights, questions or comments regarding the topic, please share them in our Comment box below or check out theAsianparent Community for more insightful parenting news and tips . Like us on Facebook and follow us on Google+ to stay up-to-date on the latest from theAsianparent.com Philippines!