'Tis the Season for Toy Safety

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The holiday season is a fun-filled time of year. Don’t let an injury dampen your holiday spirit. Check out three resources to choose safe toys to help keep kids safe.

1. No matter what the season…check for recalls:

  • Check for recalled products you may own or are thinking of purchasing.
  • Report an unsafe product or an incident where someone was injured by a product to CPSC at SaferProducts.gov.
  • Register your new products on the firms’ website so that companies know how to contact you if there is a recall.

2. Learn what to look for when buying toys and how a few simple ideas for safe use can often prevent injuries. How to Buy Safe Toys at the American Academy of Pediatrics’ (AAP) website for parents and caregivers, HealthyChildren.org, provides these guidelines:

Right toys for right age based on the:

  • Safety of the toy (for example, if there any possible choking hazards)
  • Ability of a child to play with the toy
  • Ability of a child to understand how to use a toy
  • Needs and interests at various levels of a child's development

Areas of concern addressed include - choking hazards, eye injuries, hearing injury, lacerations from broken toys, toxic materials, crib toys, and the need to buy “UL approved” electric toys. Some reasons toys are recalled include unsafe lead levelschoking or fire hazard.

3. The 35th annual Trouble in Toyland highlights nine categories of dangerous toys and gives tips for caregivers on how to keep their children safer. Hazards discussed include - mislabeled choking hazards, flocked animal figures, recalled toys available for purchase online, noisy toys, and items not advisable for children (strong magnets). Beware of products which permit in-app purchases.