How to be certain you’re buying safe toys this holiday season
Few things compare to seeing the joy on a child’s face upon opening a holiday gift. Many adults remember holiday gifts they received as children, and holiday shoppers often try to look for gifts that will be just as memorable to the special youngsters in their lives.
Shoppers might have kids’ smiles on their minds when holiday shopping, but it’s just as important to focus on safety when buying gifts for children. Prevent Blindness®, an organization devoted to ensuring everyone enjoys healthy vision from infancy through adulthood, offers the following tips to toy buyers who want to make sure they give safe gifts to kids this holiday season.
• Read all warnings and instructions on the box. Before taking a toy to the check out line, give the packaging a thorough read-through, paying particular attention to product warnings and instructions. Such warnings are designed to keep kids safe. When buying toys online, only purchase toys that include the warnings within the product description.
• Purchase age-appropriate toys. Kids’ toys come with age recommendations, which are typically listed on the front of the packaging. Stick to these recommendations. Kids might not have the ability to use toys designed for older children, and such toys might not be safe for them to use, so it’s always best to stick to the age guidelines.
• Avoid certain toys. Toys with sharp or rigid points, spikes, rods, or dangerous edges can pose a threat to youngsters. Avoid such toys, opting for toys with rounded and/or dull edges instead.
• Stick to sturdy toys. Kids do not often treat their toys delicately. Toys will be dropped or thrown, so choose sturdy toys that can withstand being dropped or thrown without breaking into tiny pieces. Tiny shards can pose a choking hazard to curious youngsters.
• Purchase toys with the ASTM designation. ASTM International is an international standards organization that develops and publishes voluntary consensus technical standards for a wide range of products, including toys. Prevent Blindness notes that toys with the letters ASTM on the packaging have been tested and met the toy standards set for by ASTM.
• Avoid toys with parts that shoot or fly off. These types of toys can damage the eyes and lead to other accidents or injuries.
When shopping for toys for children this holiday season, shoppers must consider safety first.