Safe Toys and Gifts
Posted on December 12, 2016 by CHS
Winter is here and many of us are preparing for holiday festivities! While children are excitedly anticipating the gifts that they may receive, parents are out shopping, eager to make their children’s holiday dreams come true. December is Safe Toys and Gifts Awareness Month, sponsored by Prevent Blindness America, a non-profit eye health and safety group whose goal is to encourage everyone to gift safe presents this holiday season.
Before purchasing gifts, parents can take the following steps to ensure that the toys are age appropriate and safe for their children:
When selecting a toy
- Read all warnings and instructions on the toy packaging.
- Ask yourself if the toy is right for your child’s ability and age.
- Avoid purchasing toys with sharp or rigid points, spikes, rods, small parts, chipped paint, splinters, loose nuts or bolts, or dangerous edges.
- Avoid electrical toys with heating elements for children under age 8.
- Look for the letters “ASTM”, which mean that the product meets the national safety standards set by the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM).
- Avoid toys with strings, straps, or cords longer than 7 inches that may pose a strangling risk for young children.
- When purchasing toys for a child 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.
Before letting your child play with toys
- Immediately discard plastic wrapping and other toy packaging Never let your child play with any type of plastic bag or uninflated/broken balloon.
- Inspect toys for safe, sturdy construction.
- Explain to your child how to properly use the toy.
- Fix or throw away broken toys.
- Keep your young child away from toys meant for older children.
- Supervise your child while playing.
- Store toys properly after play to avoid risks or falls.
- Charge batteries for your child as they can pose thermal burn hazards to young children.
- Manage your child’s craft projects as scissors and glue can cause harm to your child’s eyesight.
- Have your child wear the correct eye protection for sport related toys (face shields, helmets, eye guards).
Holidays are joyful times for families to share with each other.. By following these steps, you can ensure your child’s safety and enjoy the holiday season together as a family.
You can also obtain a toy safety checklist in the link below,
For additional safety guidelines on toy safety, see: