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Make Safe Toys Top Priority this Holiday Season
Kentucky Ag Connection - 12/02/2019

The Kentucky Department for Public Health (DPH), within the Cabinet for Health and Family Services (CHFS), is recognizing Toy Safety Awareness Week by offering tips for holiday shoppers.

"The joy of giving a toy to a child during the holidays can be exciting and fun for everyone to enjoy," said Dr. Henrietta Bada, Director of Maternal and Child Health. "However, the wrong toy, for the wrong age, could become a tragedy. Family and friends need to review the recommendations from the American Academy of Pediatrics and Safe Kids before buying a toy for a child or allowing their child to play with a new toy."

Some safe toy recommendations include:

- Select toys that suit the child's age, abilities, skills and interests.

- Consider toys that build developmental skills for babies and toddlers. Stacking blocks, baby puzzles and textured books are great for developing fine motor, cognitive and perceptual skills.

- Be cautious of toys containing batteries or magnets. Button batteries or magnets can be harmful or fatal if swallowed. Button batteries may be used in items such as musical greeting cards, toy building sets, remote controls, small electronics, etc. If your child swallows a button battery or a magnet, call your health provider immediately.

- Remove tags, strings and ribbons before children play with new toys.

- Read warning labels and instructions. Show the child how to properly use the toy.

- For children under the age of 10, avoid toys that must be plugged into an electrical outlet to prevent burns and electrical shock. Instead, consider toys that are battery-operated.

- Toys for older children/adults should be kept separate from young children to avoid injury and choking hazards.

- When giving a digital device, consider the purpose of the device and put in place rules for its use. Establish how the device will be monitored.

- Consider gifts that promote movement such as running, dance and jumping.

- Include a helmet for gifts that can be ridden such as bicycles and skates.

Additional information is available at http://chfs.ky.gov/

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