Toys play an important role in early childhood development but they come with considerable risks. Parents need to choose the ideal toys based on the child's age. Kids aged three years old and younger should not play with objects that present a choking hazard.
Toy safety rules state that a good product is not excessively loud for the child. Some squeak and musical toys can be overly loud, particularly when held close to the child's ears. Prolonged exposure to noisy objects can lead to hearing complications.
To ensure toy safety, parents must read product labels to determine the suitability of the toy in terms of age. Also, parents should consider other essential factors like the child's habits, behavior, and temperament. The size of the toy is another important factor to consider since smaller toys or components can create a choking hazard.
Any toys that are 1.75 inches in diameter or less can get stuck in the windpipe. For this reason, a child should not play with balls, marbles, and coins. On the other hand, it is important to ensure that all battery-operated toys come with secured battery cases. Chemicals in batteries pose a severe safety threat to children of different ages.
When choosing the ideal toy, parents should ensure that it is unbreakable. Also, the product should be free of sharp ends, long strings, and components capable of pinching small hands. Although the majority of riding toys can be used by children who can stand unaided, it is vital to check the manufacturer's recommendations.
Choosing Age-Appropriate Toys
To prevent electrical shocks and burns, avoid giving preschoolers any toy that requires plugging into a power outlet. Opt for battery-operated products with secured cases.
The best toys for babies and toddlers include stacking blocks, baby-safe puzzles, and shape sorters. These options are safe but should not come with small parts that can be swallowed. They can contribute to the development of fine perceptual, cognitive, and motor skills.
Any product with button batteries and magnets should be properly secured to prevent access to the battery or magnet. Some items with button batteries include remote controls, musical greeting cards, and hearing aids.