Make sure the most wonderful time of the year isn’t the most dangerous one. Moms and dads will spend an average of $300 on their kids’ toys this holiday season, but before you buy, make sure the toys are safe.
According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, emergency rooms treated over 224,000 toy-related injuries last year.
Dangers can be found everywhere. First know the classic toy dangers, such as small parts, strings, projectiles, toxic substances, rigid materials, and inaccurate warning labels.
“I usually look at pieces that could potentially break or disconnect,” says Kiana Tomlinson, who works at Hey Joy Toy Store.
Over the 30 years the dangerous toys report has been put out, one thing has remained consistent, balloons cause the most choking deaths in children. More than 11,000 kids go to the ER each year from flying toys. Darts and arrows should have suction cups or protective tips. Magnetic toys are popular, but if these magnets are swallowed, they can stick together inside a child’s organs.
Also, watch out for those small batteries. Tragically, there are also an estimated 2,500 button battery injuries a year. Children ingest the batteries, causing serious damage to the digestive system.
Never purchase crayons or markers without a clear “non-toxic” label and pay attention when there is a recall for a toy. Last year 14 toys were recalled, and ten million of those toys were sold in the US. Recalled toys can be found at https://www.cpsc.gov/Recalls.