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KATHY'S HOME & GARDEN TIPS - TOY SAFETY GUIDELINES FOR HOLIDAY GIFT GIVING

It’s that time of year again. Some of us are starting to get some early gift shopping done so it’s good to keep in mind some safety tips. This is especially good advice for those of us that don’t live with children.

Infant -1 year

Only purchase toys rated for 12 months and under. All toys should be soft and always assume they will be chewed. Never give toys with any removable small parts. Good choices are soft blocks and stuffed animals. Keep balloons away from young children. Under inflated or broken balloons are a choking hazard.

1-3 years

Always check age suggestions on packages here. Many toys with small parts are not good for children 3 and under. Check that small parts are not removable. Use a toilet paper roll to measure. If a toy is small enough to go through the opening in a toilet paper roll it is too small for kids under three. Large building blocks are great as are puzzles with large pieces. Be wary of any toy that has strings or straps. It only takes a few pounds of pressure to constrict blood vessels in a child’s neck. Young children cannot untwist a string or strap and can suffocate quickly.

Small Batteries

The small button batteries found in many children’s toys are an extremely dangerous swallowing hazard for young children. Children can be burned internally in as little as 2 hours. Keep all items containing these batteries out of the reach of small children. These are found in some remotes, light up shoes, jewelry, remotes and musical greeting cards.

Age recommendations

While they are good suggestions for age appropriateness, use your own judgement. Some children mature more quickly than others. Two 7 year olds may be very different in their ability to safely play with some toys, especially electric toys. Make sure all instructions are included.

Mainly use a little common sense when purchasing toys for children. Better yet, ask Mom and Dad for recommendations. You can check out if any toys have been recalled by going to www.recalls.gov 

KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN'S TEAM CHICAGO
Posted: Tuesday, November 10, 2015 10:46 AM by Dean's Team

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