Can you believe it? In a span of a week, we'll say adieu to 2017 and welcome 2018 with open arms. You probably had a great time last Christmas and have given presents to kids, who are undoubtedly the jolliest during the holiday season. And when it comes to gifts for kids, nothing can brighten up their eyes more than colorful toys.
But have you ever wondered if all the toys you have given were safe, durable, and age-appropriate? If you're buying toys for your little ones this year, or if you're buying for your own collection, here are some tips to keep in mind to ensure you're getting a safe, durable, and cost-efficient product.
1. Make sure the toy is age-appropriate
Match the toy to the child's age, not to the child's abilities. Even if your toddler niece seems to be advanced for her age, it still may not be appropriate to give that kid toys with small parts that would pose risks of choking. Don't neglect the warnings, indicating whether or not the toy is recommended for their age range.
Apart from the small parts, a toy that is not “age-appropriate” may include toys.
2. Pay attention to possible hazards
Choking, ingestion of magnets, laceration, burn, fall, and suffocation are some of the injuries that may occur if you pick the toy with the wrong physical and mechanical properties. Aside from ensuring there aren't any small parts, scan the toy for sharp edges and points that could hurt your kid. It should also be sturdy and won't fall apart easily after a rough play, exposing your little one too small parts and other hazards. Every toy should've passed through safety tests and risk assessments.
3. Think twice about projectile toys
According to the US Consumer Product Safety Commission, the playtime perils that pose the biggest threats are those play-related eye injuries. Projectile toys,.
What goes up must come down. So if you choose to buy toys with flying parts, make sure to avoid the ones with a sharp point that could potentially harm people. Look for protective tips and covers. You may also pair them with protective eyewear.
4. Pair vehicular toys with safety gears
Scooters, skates, bicycles and tricycles, and other mobility toys are favored by adventurous children. However, you should purchase corresponding safety gear for such. Top off your gift with a headgear, kneepad, and other safety equipment.
5. Inspect the materials used
Chemical toxins in toys are a sly enemy because we shop with our eyes, not with our noses. The toys neatly placed in boxes might probably be manufactured with toxic chemicals that can be inhaled and swallowed and you're unaware of it. Just think about when your toddler's tendency to put everything he sees into his mouth.
Most toys contain potentially harmful levels of lead, phthalates, bisphenol A (BPA), arsenic, mercury, cadmium, and other perilous chemicals, and what's alarming is one of every toy tested in a study of 1,500 popular children's toys contain them. The most common is lead, a metal known for its use in house paints and is primarily found in painted foreign-manufactured toys. Lead is known to be toxic to the brains of young children. When in doubt, choose wooden toys.
6. Shop on credible online shopping sites
Not only shopping online is hassle-free; shopping toys online can also be safer as you get the opportunity to review the features and specifications of the product before buying it. You'll know the materials used and whether or not it is safe for children. You can also read reviews, compare prices, and score great deals and discounts.
7. Buy secondhand items with caution
Nope, we're not just talking about 100-year-old pre-loved dolls which are apparently cursed and haunted.
Toys sold on garage sales and online marketplaces are definitely cheaper than brand new ones. There's also a great chance you'll score rare items that aren't widely available in the market. But in some cases, the items may have been subject to recall or post-retail sale modification, which aren't discussed to you by the seller.
8. Supervise your kids during playtime
It's quite tempting to leave the kids in their playtime just because you bought them a safe set of toys. However, many unfortunate things can happen when you're not looking. Lots of toys may seem harmless at first glance but can actually cause real damage to your kids. Your kids may also get their hands on older kids' toys out of curiosity.
Author Bio: Carmina Natividad is one of the writers for Zapals, a renowned global online shopping site serving Australia, Hong Kong, and China. Aside from taking photos and playing the piano, this tech-savvy writer also loves writing blogs about e-commerce and tips on finding great electronics online.