Toys for Kids
When buying toys for your children, it is important to buy age appropriate toys and supervise infants and toddlers when they are playing with toys. Young children can easily harm themselves if toys are not appropriate for their age.
All children’s toys come with labels designating what ages the toy is appropriate for, warnings (e.g., choking hazard) and instructions for appropriate use. As a father, it is important to read these labels so that you do not inadvertently give your son or daughter something that can harm him or her.
When buying toys for infants and young toddlers, you should avoid toys with strings and small, removable parts. A string or cord longer than 7 inches can be a strangulation hazard to a young child and removable or not well-attached parts can be choking hazards.
Be careful of giving plush toys with sewn-on buttons (including button eyes) to your infant or young toddler. Young children will pull and chew on their toys and may choke on a loose button that comes off in process.
Electronic toys for children under three years of age should have battery compartments that require tools to open. Batteries can be potentially dangerous to your child; therefore, it is important to make sure they are safely locked away from inquisitive fingers.
When buying painted toys, make sure the paint is non-toxic. This should be specified on the box or toy label.
When purchasing bins to keep your child’s toys in, be sure that the bin in not air-tight when sealed. Children often like to crawl in and out of boxes and it is important that storage bins for toys have ventilation holes if your child happens to get trapped inside.
Even if a toy says that it is suitable for young children, it is a good idea to look the toy over to make sure all parts are secure and it truly is a safe toy for your child. Also, check to make sure that there are no sharp edges or broken pieces that could hurt your child. This is especially important when your child is playing with wooden toys. Check wooden toys frequently for splinters and cracks.
Sometimes toys are recalled for potential hazards. You can stay abreast of the latest information on recalled children’s toys by periodically checking the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Division’s Web site at http://www.cpsc.gov