It’s here! That time of year when kids of all ages start to dream about new toys under the tree.

It’s no secret, today’s toys aren’t what they used to be. Technology is the name of the game, for now. But no matter how much toys have changed, safety will always be in play. 

Safety first

According to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission, there were more than 250,000 toy-related injuries treated in hospital emergency rooms in 2017. More than one-third of the kids treated were younger than age 5. With so many new toys hitting the shelves, it’s more important than ever to keep an eye on safety.

Here are five top tips for toy safety –

  1. Age matters. Check the package for the manufacturer’s age recommendation. Toys that are too advanced or too small can injure younger kids.
  2. Skip the plug-ins. If your child is under 10, help prevent shocks or burns by avoiding toys that require electricity. If you do buy electric toys, verify that they’re “UL Approved.”
  3. Beware of batteries. Button batteries and magnets are easy to swallow and can cause serious stomach, intestinal and throat problems.
  4. Read the labels. Warning labels are important sources of safety information. Read them carefully and show your child how to use their new toy the right way.
  5. No strings attached. Tags, strings and ribbons can be downright dangerous to smaller children. Remove these hazards before you let your child play.

Sources: Consumer Product Safety Commission, “Toy Report 2016”, (accessed July 12, 2019), available at; American Academy of Pediatrics, “Toy Safety Tips,” (accessed July 12, 2019), available at

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