A guide to buying safe toys

image-1The holiday season has arrived. As adults, we are all excited about taking a much needed break from work. With friends and family flying in from around the world, everyone’s making plans for year-enddinners and 31st night parties.To kids, it is that time of the year when they tear through countless presents and discover new toys.

Having experienced this joy in our own childhood days, we are very aware of the excitement of receiving a cool new toy. And today, as parents, grandparents, uncles and aunts, we try to relive these moments with the kids in our lives. We scour through the isles in search of that one perfect toy that we believe is sure to bring a smile to their face.

However, finding the right toy for the right kid is a tricky task. In the mad rush of our daily lives, we often tend to overlook certain details. Minor details that may end up putting kids in harm’s way.

Here are some general guidelines to keep in mind when shopping for toys this holiday season:

  1. Go for toys that can stimulate the child’s mind and help in their cognitive development. This includes toys such as jigsaw puzzles, LEGO sets, etc.
  2. Glued to their digital gaming platforms, kids are less interested in physical, indoor and outdoor active play experiences that are important for their development. So try and encourage them to get active with toys like balls, hula hoops, ride on bikes and cars, etc. or to head outdoors with beach sets, gardening kits, etc.
  3. Check the sturdiness of the toy to see if it can withstand impact and day to day wear and tear as the kid would be heartbroken to see the toy break apart within the first few days.
  4. Always play attention to the age and skill level recommendations, safety warnings, etc. from the toy’s manufacturer which are often displayed prominently on the packing.
  5. Make sure that no toxic materials such as lead based paints and coatingswhich could cause poisoning were used. Lookout for “nontoxic” certifications and labels.
  6. Inspect toys for sharp edges and pointed surfaces which could cause cuts or stabs. Some stuffed toys too have hidden metal wires to support them which are equally dangerous.
  7. Take special care when buying toys for infants and toddlers.We all know that they often put things into their mouths to explore them. Toys with small, removable parts could get caught in the child’s throat and pose a serious choking hazard.
  8. Avoid toys with small magnets and ensure that batteries, if any, are secured within the toy. If swallowed, they could cause serious injuries.
  9. Make sure that any strings, cords and wires attached to the toy are short as children can get strangled by them.

These are the some of the guidelines that establishedtoy brands too take into consideration when designing their products. Brands that made playtime all the more fun during our childhood days. Being sold in several countries around the world, they come under tough scrutiny, especially in some of the more developed markets. Hence, they diligently adhere to the stringent safety and quality standards prescribed in these countries. And thistends to make them a safer choice for the kids in our lives too.

So, let’s head out and pick the perfect toys that are both fun and safe.Hope you have a fun filled holiday seasonwith your loved ones.

P.S. – Do remember to dispose plastic bags and packaging material safely as they can lead to suffocation and are also bad for the environment.


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