advertisement
15 December 2010

Give safe toys this holiday season

Whether it's due to the demands of commercial-addled kids or the good intentions of exuberant gift-givers, the concept of toy safety is often lost over the holidays.

0

Whether it's due to the demands of commercial-addled kids or the good intentions of exuberant gift-givers, the concept of toy safety is often lost over the holidays.

But safety considerations should be at the top of any wish list.

The message is: include safety gear with any sports-related gifts, and try to buy age-appropriate toys.  The chances of your kids receiving age-inappropriate gifts or gifts that don't include proper safety equipment increase over the holidays when many gift givers are relatives or friends not used to buying for children.

Labels often ignored

It's important that you advise friends to read the labels on toys because they are usually a decent guide for gift-givers who are buying for children they don't know.

And if some unusual, second-hand toy happens to catch a shopper's eye, even more caution is needed. It's not uncommon for toys that have been recalled or are no longer considered safe to wind up on consignment-shop shelves.

Choking

Choking on small toy parts is a particular concern, and that includes Latex balloons.

Toys that should be avoided

Here are some other types of toys that should be avoided, according to the National SAFE KIDS Campaign:

  • Toys with small, removable parts. The parts can pose a choking hazard to children under age 3. Use a small parts tester - it can be purchased at a toy or baby specialty store - to measure the size of the toy or part. If the piece fits inside the tube, then it is considered a choking hazard.
  • Toys with sharp points or edges. Children may unintentionally cut themselves or another person.
  • Toys that produce loud noises. Toy guns and high-volume portable cassette recorders can permanently impair a child's hearing.
  • Propelled toy darts and other projectiles. They can cause cuts or serious eye injuries.
  • Toys with strings, straps or cords longer than 7 inches. Long strings and cords can become wrapped around a child's neck and strangle him or her.
  • Electric toys. These are a potential burn hazard. Avoid toys with a heating element battery or electrical plugs if your children are under the age of 8.
  • Toys painted with lead paint. Exposure can result in lead poisoning, causing serious damage to a child's brain, kidneys and nervous system.
  • Toy cap guns. Paper roll, strip or ring caps can be ignited by the slightest friction and cause burns.

(Health24, updated December 2010)

Read more:

Toxic toys

 

More:

ChildHome
advertisement

Get a quote

advertisement

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining

Live healthier

Winter Wellness »

Boost winter health Happy feet in winter Don’t become a winter blimp

Tips to stay fit and healthy in winter

When it's cold it's easy to pick up the coughs and sniffles, and it's even easier to indulge in comfort foods. Don't !

Vitamin wise »

Vitamins for HIV What to eat for vitamin B? Cut down on vitamins

Get your vitamins right

Find out which vitamin to use for which condition. Ask our Vitamin expert.