If you weren’t already avoiding ball pits, new research may have you running from the giant pit of germs.
A new study from the University of North Georgia confirmed what parents assumed, ball pits in physical therapy offices were full of microbes, including some dangerous ones, according to USNews.com.
We can only assume this applies to public ball pits as well.
The study found dozens of bacterial species and one species of yeast, some of which are responsible for pink eye, urinary tract infections, bloodstream infections, heart inflammation and more.
“You might consider asking for no (physical therapy) treatment in the ball pit,” senior study author Dobrusia Bialonska says in the report. “We definitely showed that there are things on the balls that can potentially hurt a child who is immune-compromised.”
Bialonska went on to say, “If kids are healthy, let them go and play. It may help build their immune system.”
The study involved six ball pits in Georgia physical therapy clinics, with nine to 15 balls from each location were tested. Microorganisms were found on all balls, but some only had a few.
If you allow your children in ball pits, make sure they always wash their hands after they get out.