Children enjoy toys and they play an integral role in their development. However, it’s essential that these toys remain secure and do not cause harm.
Most injuries from toys are minor cuts, scrapes, and bruises. However, some toys may pose risks such as choking hazards or fire hazards; thus, caution should always be exercised when handling any toy.
Choose the Right Toy
Toys that stimulate children’s imaginations and enable them to play safely are ideal. When selecting toys for your child, make sure they match their abilities and interests.
Young kids often enjoy toys that involve cause and effect. Popular choices include puzzles, shape sorters, and push-button toys that activate lights, sounds, and other actions.
Many toys come with age-range information on the package, but it’s always best to take into account your child’s skill level and stage of development when selecting a toy.
Toddlers should not be given toys that shoot or throw objects until they can safely control it with their hands. Furthermore, if your child has difficulty swallowing, never give them any toy with parts smaller than their mouth.
Check for Choking Hazards
Children enjoy playing with toys, but they can also be dangerous. Every year, tens of thousands of kids are treated in hospital emergency departments for toy-related injuries. So, something like a dinosaur skeleton might not be great for a younger child.
Choking is a major cause of toy-related deaths for young children. To reduce the risk of this happening, test whether small parts can fit through an empty toilet paper tube or choke tube before letting your child play with them.
Toys with long strings or cords can easily wrap around a child’s neck, strangulating them and leading to serious injury.
Battery-operated toys should have safety covers with screws to prevent children from taking them apart. Batteries and their fluid can present serious risks such as choking, internal bleeding, and chemical burns.
Be sure to inspect the labels of all toys for potential choking hazards and other safety concerns. If you have older children living in the same house, separate their toys in order to prevent potential accidents due to choking.
Check for Sharp Parts
When purchasing a toy for your child, ensure it has no sharp points or edges that could cause injury. Furthermore, ensure the toy isn’t too heavy and made of sturdy plastic or another durable material so that it won’t break easily during playtime.
Additionally, ensure all small parts are securely attached or attached to something strong enough for your child to avoid taking them out and swallowing them. This includes buttons, batteries, ribbons, yarn, or eyes as well as any other plastic bits your child could chew on.
You can look for safety symbols to distinguish an unsafe toy from one that is safe to use. The CE mark, for instance, ensures the item meets European safety requirements and will likely last over time. Other child-safety indicators like the UKCA symbol or lion icon from British Toy & Hobby Association should also be observed.
Check for Damage
Toys for children can be fun, but they also pose risks of injury. Every year, thousands of children visit emergency departments due to toy-related traumas.
To prevent injuries, select toys for children that are age-appropriate. Look for items made of safe materials and easy to clean.
Be cautious with old toys, hand-me-downs from friends or family, or those that have broken parts or sharp edges. These can present a serious choking hazard for young children and should never be used improperly.
When your child’s toy is too small for them to handle safely, try testing it with a cardboard toilet paper roll. If any part of the toy fits inside, then it may be too small to play with safely.
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