Toy Safety – Julie B. Leonhardt, CPNP

With the holidays fast approaching, toy safety is a high priority for parents!

When purchasing or receiving toys for children there are some important safety issues to consider.

Magnets- Many toys marketed for children contain magnets these toys are highly regulated for safety but parents need to be vigilant.

High powered magnet sets have small magnets that are dangerous for small children.

Whether it’s marketed for kids or adults all building and play sets that contain magnets should be kept away from small children.

Children should be well supervised when using toys that contain magnets.

Many holiday celebrations include balloons, which are fun and festive but also pose a choking or suffocation risk for small children when deflated or broken.

Clean up all broken balloon pieces immediately.

Keep deflated balloons away from children under eight years old.

Many toys contain a plastic film on toys mirrors/surfaces to protect from scratching. These films pose a choking/suffocation risk to children. Inspect all toys and remove all plastic films from toys and products before giving to child.

Often toys for older children contain small parts and balls. These toys should not be given to children under age 3. Please follow the safety/age recommendation on toy packages and closely supervise all children with toys that contain small parts.

Scooters/riding toys including skateboards, rip sticks, roller blades all move very fast. Children should wear helmets and safety gear that fit properly.

Keep toys appropriate for older children away from younger siblings.

Parents should supervise all battery charging. Chargers and adapters pose a burn risk to young children. Instructions on chargers should be followed carefully. Overheating is a risk associated with all chargers.

Button batteries pose a significant risk if swallowed.

Keep all products containing batteries out of reach from children.

If you suspect your child has ingested a battery, please call

National Battery Ingestion Hotline 202-625-3333

Poison Control 1-800-222-1222

Pediatrics West 978-577-0437

Cap guns are often a popular gift. These toys pose risks to all children and should not be given to young children. For older children:

Do not keep caps on pockets as friction can cause caps to ignite and burn.

Cap guns also pose a noise hazard- do not fire closer than 1 foot from ear

Do not use indoors

For more information on toy safety consult the US Consumer Product Safety Commission website

Remember some of the best gifts your child can receive are activities to keep them happy and healthy especially in the cold winter months!

Consider experiences rather than toys, such as:

Museum membership

Swimming lessons

Indoor place space gift cards

Tickets to age appropriate shows

We wish you happiness and health in the upcoming holiday season!

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