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The Gift Giving Guide to Toy Safety

Posted on December 10, 2018 and filed under Urgent Care Blog

The last thing parents want to see is a moment of joy turn into a moment of pain for their child. Despite best intentions, non-age appropriate gifts and toys can cause serious injuries, or in some cases, death. A report from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC) found an estimated 251,700 toy-related injuries were treated in emergency departments in 2017. Of those injuries, an estimated 38% were classified as lacerations, contusions, or abrasions, and 48% of these injuries were to the face or head. If something does go wrong during your holiday, urgent care is perfect for your minor health emergencies. MD Now Urgent Care Centers are open from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m., seven days a week, 365 days a year.

It’s no coincidence that December is National Safe Toys & Gift Month. Keep the holidays merry this year by following these safety tips for toys:

  • Always follow the manufacturer age guides and labels on toys
  • Make sure all arts and crafts products are non-toxic
  • Pick products that meet the national safety standards, marked with the American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM) label
  • Evaluate the sound level of the toy to make sure it won’t harm your children’s ears
  • Avoid giving toys with magnets to small children, as they could be swallowed and cause internal injuries
  • Check that fabric toys are made with flame-retardant material, and ensure they are machine washable
  • Decide whether your child is mature enough for certain electric toys that can be dangerous if improperly used

Constant diligence is the best way to prevent toys from causing injuries, even when they are age appropriate, and have passed all safety standards. Follow these three simple steps to keep playtime safe for your children:

  • Stay up-to-date on toy recalls 
  • Teach your children to put away their toys to help avoid tripping hazards and broken bones 
  • Check toys for maintenance. Make sure there are no pointy broken edges, or parts falling off that could become choking hazards

At times, unwrapping the toy can be more dangerous that playing with the toy itself. Always help your child open their new gift and properly dispose of the packaging material. Never let your child handle sharp objects as this could lead to potential eye injuries.

Each year, between 12,000 and 15,000 people require immediate medical attention because of holiday injuries. Keep yourself safe by not using dull scissors or inappropriate objects to open gifts and boxes. Avoid medical emergencies by reading up on how to prevent the four most common holiday injuries. Finally, stress around the holidays can also cause accidents. Use these tips and tricks to keep the season stress and pain free so you can spend the holiday season with your loved ones.

 

Have a safe and happy holiday from our family to yours!

– The MD Now Team

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