The holiday season is finally around the corner, with parents, uncles, and aunts scrambling to purchase gifts for their little ones. While purchasing toys for that adorable 3-year old nephew may seem like a cakewalk, it isn’t so with many toys posing as serious health hazards. Before engaging in holiday shopping for your children, it is prudent to keep the following points in mind:
Avoid small objects, such as marbles: Worlds Against Toys Causing Harm, or W.A.T.C.H., warns parents not to purchase toys that contain small items, such as marbles, as they may lead to choking. While holiday shopping, avoid tiny magnet toys, as they are known to cause serious injuries and may even require you to rush to the emergency room.
Don’t purchase toys with cords or strings: By their very nature, children are inquisitive beings. Young kids tend to use cords and strings in hazardous ways. Serious strangulation risks ensue if you present long cords and strings to unsuspecting children.
Check warnings for lead content: High lead and cadmium levels can pose as serious threats to your child’s health. Always, always check for warnings at the back of the toy’s packaging in order to make an informed decision. Many companies take product liability seriously and provide abundant information about the toy.
At all times, buy age-appropriate toys: Some parents place toys meant for 8-year olds in the hands of 3-year olds. This is a big no-no, as certain toys are designed keeping in mind the child’s age. Purchasing a toy unsuitable for your child’s age may jeopardize their health and dampen the holiday spirit.
Give your child the present he wants, but make sure it’s harmless. If you wish to check whether a toy is child-friendly or not, review W.A.T.C.H’s worst toys of 2014 list.