Choosing Safe Christmas Toys ― Hospital emergency rooms treat tens of thousands of toy-related injuries each year. Read on with some important Health-e tips for selecting the safest toys to prevent choking and other potential mishaps.
- Toys made of fabric should be labeled as flame resistant or flame retardant.
- Stuffed toys should be washable otherwise they can carry nasty bacteria over time.
- Painted toys should be covered with lead-free paint and art materials should say “non toxic.” Look for this on the toy label.
- Crayons and paints should have a precautionary label on the package. This means they’ve been evaluated and tested and found safe.
- Make sure all toy parts are larger than your child’s mouth to prevent choking or other injuries. And be sure if you are buying a small toy for an older child that it stays out of the reach of younger children.
- Avoid toys that are too loud and could cause damage to your child’s hearing.
- Stay away from toys with sharp edges or points and toys with cords and strings. The cord can become wrapped around a child’s neck, creating a strangulation hazard.
- Electric toys should be UL approved. Check the label to be sure.
- If you buy your child a bike, scooter, skateboard or other toy they can ride, make sure you also get them a helmet and the proper protective gear.
- Do not buy toys that contain powerful neodymium magnets. These can cause serious injury and death if ingested. It’s also important to make sure that if a toy contains small “button” batteries, that they cannot be easily removed from the toy and swallowed.
- And be sure the toy you buy is appropriate for your child’s age. Many toys have labels on them with a suggested age range but use your best judgment and consider your child’s temperament, habits, and behavior when you buy a toy.
- Finally — think smart! Choosing the right toy or game can increase independence, creativity and curiosity while exploring problem solving, feelings and social interactions. When picking a toy or game it is important to keep in mind how it will enhance development and encourage exploration, experimentation and creativity.
Choosing Safe Christmas Toys
Where do you find safe and beautifully crafted Christmas ornaments and handmade gifts in Bali while also giving back to the community?
Recognizing International Day Of Persons with Disabilities on December 3 (see article in this month’s issue of Health-e), consider reaching out to Yayasan Bhakti Senang Hati, a non-profit organization that assists creative people and artisans living with disabilities to earn a living by designing toys, jewelry and handicrafts including one of a kind, handmade Christmas ornaments.
The foundation has designed programs to develop physical and economic independence to increase awareness in the general Bali community for the rights of people with disabilities. It also endeavors to lift disabled people out of their social isolation, provide technical assistance to achieve physical independence and build confidence through regular social interaction.