Pay attention to the age recommendations for toys to reduce choking hazards and reflect the needs of children at their developmental stage
The gift-giving season has arrived, and many children look forward to playing with new toys. To keep these experiences joy-filled, it’s important to carefully consider toy purchases and ways to avoid injury.
“Most injuries from toys are minor cuts, scrapes, and bruises,” said Benjamin Hoffman, MD, FAAP, chair of the AAP Council on Injury, Violence, and Poison Prevention. “But some toys can actually be dangerous or cause injury if they are used in the wrong way. Look out for button batteries, high-powered magnets or other small objects that children might be tempted to put in their mouths, noses, or ears.
The American Academy of Pediatrics offers its top 10 toy buying tips for this holiday season, which journalists are encouraged to share in articles, broadcasts or podcasts.
“Make sure to check the age recommendations on toys, which not only helps prevent possible choking hazards but also tells you that these toys are best suited for your child’s needs and interests at this stage of development,” said Lois Lee, MD, MPH, FAAP, incoming chair of the Council on Injury, Violence and Poison Prevention.
Important information about recalled toys
One of the goals of the Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) is to protect consumers and families from dangerous toys. It sets up rules and guidelines to ensure products are safe and issues recalls of products if a problem is found. Toys are recalled for various reasons including unsafe lead levels, choking or fire hazards, or other problems that make them dangerous. Toys that are recalled should be removed right away. If you think your child has been exposed to a toy containing lead, ask your child's doctor about testing for elevated blood lead levels.
To request an interview, contact AAP Public Affairs. More information is available at HealthyChildren.org, including: