Kansas City, Mo Children's Mercy Hospital in Kansas City, Mo., has released a list of guidelines for parents in choosing toys for their children this holiday season.
Dr. Denise Dowd, chief of the section of injury prevention at Children's Mercy, said that parents should think about safety when buying toys and make sure they are age-appropriate.
Children's Mercy makes the following suggestions when buying toys:
Read the label before buying the toy, checking for warnings, recommended ages and whether adult supervision is needed.
Think large when it comes to buying toys to prevent choking.
Avoid toys that shoot small objects because they can cause eye injuries or choking.
Avoid toys that make loud or shrill noises to protect a child's hearing.
Look for sturdy toy construction and watch out for sharp points or edges.
Avoid toxic items and materials that could cause poisoning, including not buying hobby kits and chemistry sets for children younger than 12.
Electric toys should be "UL Approved."
Be careful when buying crib toys; strings and wires that hang on a crib should be kept short.
Choose a toy chest carefully, looking for smooth, finished edges, locking supports, ventilation holes and safe hinges.