When purchasing new toys, you should follow toy safety and the age guidelines on the packaging. Infant toys must have no tiny parts that pose choking hazards, and nothing on a baby toy should be sharp or detachable.
Infants explore objects with their mouths, so anything baby picks up should be too big to fit down the hatch. The more chewable and unbreakable a toy is, the safer your baby will be.
Toys and games are meant to make playtime fun for your child. But unless you carefully select and check the toys that your child plays with, they may be dangerous.
Even though American manufacturer’s voluntary standards are the most comprehensive in the world, accidents can easily happen when inappropriate toys are given to children, or otherwise safe toys are given to children too young or small to use them properly.
Be especially watchful if you have an older child, or your baby spends a lot of time with older cousins or other children. Those puzzle pieces and small construction blocks that are perfectly fine for a six- or seven-year old can be deadly for a toddler.
Each year, about 150,000 children are treated in hospital emergency rooms for toy-related accidents. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s recommended age levels on the toy’s package.
These labels are designed for your child’s safety, not just his developmental or intellectual abilities. And teach your child how to play with the toy according to instructions.
While you don’t want to stifle his creativity, a perfectly safe toy can become a hazard to a child if it’s misused.
Infants should not be given toys that have the following:
Dr. Bettye M. CaldwellPh.D. Professor of Pediatrics in Child Development and Education
*Parenting advice is given as a suggestion only. We recommend you also consult your healthcare provider.