Putting Safety At The Top of Your Holiday Shopping List
With the holiday season quickly approaching, many parents are eager to start shopping for the toys on their kids’ wishlists. But before rushing to the nearest toy store, it’s important to put safety at the top of the list.
According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission in 2013 there were an estimated 256,000 toy-related injuries treated in U.S. hospital emergency departments. Most of these injuries occurred in children under the age of 12, and injuries included laceration, contusion/abrasion, strains/sprains, fractures, ingestion, concussion, and puncture injuries.
Just in time for the holiday shopping season, we’ve outlined important safety guidelines when choosing the perfect toy for your children from infants to elementary school age kids.
- Always pay close attention to age recommendations for toys and choose one according to age, interest and skill level of the child.
- Inspect all toys closely for sharp edges or objects. These toys should not be given to children under the age of 8.
- Many toys are choking hazards to young children. Deflated or broken balloons pose a huge threat and should discarded immediately.
- Any toys with small parts are also choking hazards, and should not be in the hands of children under the age of 3. Magnets and dime size batteries are often apart of children toys, therefore, they should be thoroughly inspected before giving to young children.
- According to CPSC, riding toys were associated with more toy injuries than any other toy in 2013. Scooters, bikes, and skateboards tend to go quite fast, and falls usually result in serious injury. If you plan on buying your child a riding toy it is strongly suggested you also purchase appropriate safety gear such as helmets, elbow and knee pads that fitted for the child.
- Once gifts are opened, wrapping paper, ribbon, and other toy packaging can become dangerous playthings and choking hazards to young children.
- If you have more than one child, make sure you keep toys that are age appropriate for you older child away from younger children.
- Battery charging should be supervised by adults.
- Supervision is key! Always keep an eye on your young children, and provide safe play environments, both inside and outside.
We hope these tips will make choosing toys for the little ones stress-free. Let’s make the holiday season (and beyond) safe and fun for the entire family.