You’ll Shoot Your Eye Out – Selecting Safe Toys for Children as Gifts

As we head to the stores in search of the perfect gift for the children on our list, there are some things to know to ensure an injury-free holiday season.

Prevent Blindness America, an eye health and safety organization, has declared December to be Safe Toy and Gifts Month. Not all of the toys that children want are appropriate for their age. Shoppers must be vigilant in choosing age-appropriate toys. That is why it is important for shoppers to consider what is best for the child versus what they want.

Here are some tips to keep the children in your life safe this holiday season:

  1. Consider the child’s age and maturity level before making any purchases. Abide by age recommendations listed on the toys’ packaging.
  2. Purchase only toys that meet the American Society for Testing and Materials’ (ASTM) approval. If the toy being considered makes the grade, there should be a label on the package stating so.
  3. Do not purchase items with sharp edges or toys that have parts that fly off such as bb guns.
  4. When purchasing sporting equipment, include protective gear as well. For example, if purchasing a bicycle, purchase a helmet as well.
  5. Do not give toys with small parts to young children as the small parts will often end up in their mouth presenting a choking hazard. If a toy can fit inside a toilet paper roll, the toy is not appropriate for children under the age of 3.
  6. Inspect toys for sturdiness. Toys should be durable and able to withstand impact.
  7. Any toys labeled “supervision required” must be used in the presence of an adult.
  8. Keep toys meant for older children away from the younger ones.

Once the gifts are open, be sure to discard any packaging materials. You can check for toy recalls by visiting the Consumer Product Safety Commission’s website.

The team at Raleigh Eye Center wants you and your loved ones to be safe this holiday season. If you have an eye related emergency or concern, please call our office at (919) 876-2427. We wish you a happy, healthy holiday season!