Kids love playing with toys in the bathtub, but scientists discovered what’s really inside those rubber duckies and it’s pretty nasty. Researchers from the Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology, ETH Zurich, and the University of Illinois did a study
on the microbes and bacteria inside a used rubber ducky and you should just get ready to throw those things away now.
Not only are those toys cluttering up your bathroom, it turns out they’re also grosser than you thought. Researchers counted the microbes swimming inside the rubber bath toys and found that the “murky” liquid released when the duck gets squeezed contains
“potentially pathogenic bacteria.” We’re talking Legionella and Pseudomonas aeruginosa, and those bacteria are a common cause of “hospital-acquired infections.”
But it’s not just the tap water that promotes this kind of bacterial growth. It’s the blend of bodily fluids and contaminants, like soap, that let that bacteria grow. And some bacteria is good for kids, to help build up their immune systems, but researchers warn that bacteria can cause eye, ear, and intestinal infections, along with the benefits it provides. And when kids squirt water from bath toys into their faces, scientists say they’re putting themselves at risk for getting sick.
So do what you will with this knowledge, parents. But I’m heading to the bathroom to toss these germy rubber duckies before bath time tonight. Because you can’t un-know this information now.