According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, “every year more than 250,000 children are sent to the hospital for toy-related injuries”. They also report that the majority of children to be seen at the hospital are children under the age of 15. While, most of these injuries could be prevented with some safety knowledge.
When it comes to toys and gifts, the enjoyment and desire to get your children their “most-wanted” toy(s) may cause buyers to forget about safety factors linked with them. Before you make these purchases, remember to consider the safety and age range of the toys. During this holiday season, we want every child to be happy and healthy and to protect them from injuries.
Here are some helpful tips to look for when purchasing toys for Holidays (and beyond):
- Look for labels that assure you the toys have passed a safety inspection – “ATSM” means the toy has met the American Society for Testing and Materials standards.
- Gifts of sports equipment should always be accompanied by protective gear (give a helmet with the skateboard)
- Do NOT give toys with ropes and cords or heating elements
- Do NOT give crayons and markers unless they are labeled “nontoxic”
- Inspect the toys your child has received. Check them for age, skill level, and developmental appropriateness before allowing them to be played with.
- When purchasing toys for children with special needs try to: Choose toys that may appeal to different senses such as sound, movement, and texture; consider interactive toys to allow the child to play with others; and think about the size of the toy and the position a child would need to be in to play with it.
Safe Toy Resources:
- Choosing Safe Toys: https://kidshealth.org/en/parents/safe-toys.html
- Safe Toy Checklist: https://www.preventblindness.org/safe-toy-checklist
- Toy Safety Tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics: https://www.aap.org/en-us/about-the-aap/aap-press-room/news-features-and-safety-tips/Pages/Toy-Safety-Tips-from-the-American-Academy-of-Pediatrics.aspx
Reporting Unsafe Toys
Check the CPSC website for the latest information about toy recalls or call their hotline at (800) 638-CPSC to report a toy you think is unsafe. Visit www.cpsc.gov and search toys under the recall list.
Information from: https://www.healthtradition.com/december-is-safe-toys-and-gifts-month/