It’s all fun and games until… You probably know the old familiar saying.
Choking hazards and toxic chemical recalls associated with toys can cause anxiety for parents, eye injuries seem to receive slightly less attention.
Keeping an Eye on the Dangers
Like kids in a candy shop, kids in a toy store are in their glory. Not only are toys wildly entertaining and captivating for kids, they also play a tremendous role in childhood development. But fun does not always equal safe. It’s up to you to make the distinction. While common sense is always your best defense, there are some definite toy no-no’s, especially for children under 15 since this age group accounted for nearly three quarters (74%) of all toy related injuries in 2009.
The toys below should be avoided completely or only permitted with close parental supervision for children of the appropriate age. Check toy packaging for age guidelines:
- Guns are the worst offenders of eye safety.
- Toy Weapons in general, are an invitation to eye injury.
- Children should never use or come in contact with fireworks.
- Laser Pointers can cause retinal damage in certain situations and should be used with extreme caution.
Set your Sights on the Right Toys
It’s smart to establish your own safety checks to help you make the right toy decisions for your little one.
Here are some steps to follow:
- Prepare: Educate yourself on the right toys for your child’s age group and research the toys that interest them.
- Read Labels: Look for the letters “ASTM” on the label. This means that the toy conforms to certain national safety standards.
- Play Inspector: Examine for sturdy construction. You don’t want a toy that could break and shatter into sharp pieces.
- Keep Safety Going At Home: Once a toy has passed your safety checks, demonstrate proper use of the toy to your child since misuse of the toy is also another cause of injury.
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