It is that time of year again. Parents, family, and friends are looking for the perfect gift for the little ones in their life. You search high and low for the items on their wish list hoping to make their holidays the best ever. Nothing beats the joy of seeing the child open their presents.

Many questions arise when purchasing the perfect toy:

  • Does it need batteries?
  • Do I have the right tools to assemble the gift?

But the most important question you should ask is “Is this toy safe”?

Approximately 174,100 children were treated in U.S. emergency rooms for toy-related injuries in 2016. The majority of those accidents occurred to the head/face.

4 Ways to Find Safe Holiday Toys

You can avoid toy-related injuries and death by reading labels and being safety-conscious.

The following tips will help you choose appropriate toys this holiday season and all year long:

  • Find the perfect toy for the right age: Always read instructions and warning labels. Make sure the toy is age appropriate. Check to make sure there aren’t any small parts that present a choking hazard.
  • Don’t forget a helmet: If a bicycle, scooter, skateboard, skis or snowboards are on your list, purchase a helmet. We see the most injuries in children under 15 years of age with non-motorized scooters toys. To learn more about helmet safety, go to: www.livephat.org
  • Store toys after play: After play time is over, put all toys in a bin or container. Use a toy chest with a lid that stays open in any position to which it is raised, and will not fall unexpectedly on a child. For extra safety, be sure there are ventilation holes for fresh air. Watch for sharp edges that could cut and hinges that could pinch or squeeze.
  • Sign up to receive product recalls: Safe Kids compiles product recalls specific to children and sends twice-monthly e-mail alerts for recent recalls. Sign-up for the latest recall information at: https://www.safekids.org/product-recalls. You can also go to www.recalls.gov for additional information about product recalls related to kids.

Give the Gift of a Helmet

Bicycle helmets make a perfect holiday gift. They are available at a discounted cost for UVM Medical Center employees and their family members. We have a variety of fashionable colors and kid and adult sizes are available. Please contact us with the size you need and to schedule a pick-up time: vtsafekids@uvmhealth.org

Helmets are $10 each (cash or check). Pick-up is at the main campus.

The University of Vermont Children’s Hospital wishes everyone a safe, happy, and healthy holiday season!

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