Holiday Countdown: Safe Toys

Health Watch is a Public Service of the University News Bureau and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.



This week on Health Watch, we’ve been talking about preparing for the holidays in ways that are safe and healthy. Previously, we discussed choosing toys that don’t send negative messages. You should also keep safety in mind when choosing gifts for children.

Dr. Joel Steinberg, a pediatrician at UT Southwestern Medical Center, offers some suggestions on buying toys that will be safe for your child. First, make sure the toy is age-appropriate. A toy that’s too advanced may be frustrating. The age recommendations are based on physical development, not on how smart a child is. Look out for toys that can be broken so that small parts may become choking hazards. Hold any noise-making toys up to your ear. If the noise is too loud for you, it could be harmful to a child’s hearing. Avoid toys with pull strings longer than 12 inches because those can strangle small children.

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December 2011

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