We are delighted to introduce a guest post on our blog from the lovely ladies at www.mumsmall.com on safety advise for children.
Toy Safety Advice for
Babies, Toddlers & Children
One of the biggest concerns of parents is keeping their children safe. Therefore when it comes to providing toys for their children, parents want to choose ones that are both safe and enjoyable. However, the overwhelming number of toys on the market can make the process of choosing the right ones a bit more difficult at times. The following information is designed to make choosing the right toys for children of all ages a little easier.
Toy Safety - Newborn to 12 Months
Newborns typically do not need toys to enjoy themselves. Since much of their learning takes place through sensory observations, simply talking to and singing with your baby can provide hours of entertainment. As your baby gets a little older, you may want to provide him with simple rattles, cloth books or hanging mobiles. The main concern regarding toys for this age group is that they are free of small parts. Loose or small parts can break off, creating a choking hazard for children in this age group. Since younger children are likely to put everything into their mouths, be sure to check toys regularly for loose parts or sharp edges that can cause injuries.
Toy Safety - One to Three Years
Children in this age group are still likely to be putting toys in their mouths, which is one of the primary ways that they explore their environment. Aside from continuing to avoid toys with small parts, you must also be mindful of the types of toys that any older children in the home may play with. If you have older children at home, ask them to play with the toys more suited for their age groups in their rooms instead of in areas that are shared with younger children. This helps ensure that no small pieces are left behind for a younger child to find later on.
As your child approaches the age of three, he will likely be ready for toys that are a bit more advanced. Since toddlers are constantly on the move, look for toys that enhance this growing ability. Balls of all sizes are popular choices for children this age and they also serve to help enhance your child's hand-eye coordination. Building blocks can be educational and fun, especially if they feature numbers or letters on the sides. Also, continue to encourage your child's interest in books as they approach the age when they begin to learn how to read. Providing a safe playing environment for your child indoors and outside can help them prevent unnecessary injuries and make playtime more enjoyable for the entire family.
Toy Safety - Four to Eleven Years
As children approach the ages of four and five, they are preparing to enter school. Instead of the toys they once favoured when they were toddlers, they will be learning new and more advanced skills. Children this age love to paint, colour and draw. They also enjoy ride-on toys such as tricycles, which helps them continue to develop their coordination. Books will likely become even more appealing to your child as they begin to recognize letters and numbers. All of these types of toys will help prepare them for their school career just around the corner.
School age children enjoy imaginative play a great deal. Provide them with toys that allow them to use their imagination as well as artistic abilities. In addition, be sure that any toys that make noises are not too loud, as this can cause hearing loss in young children. Be very careful with toys that can cause a great deal of bodily injury if misused, such as bikes and trampolines. Since children many times underestimate the dangers of such toys, it is the responsibility of the parents to be sure that these items are used in the proper way.
Once children approach the ages of eight to eleven, their interests will likely change once again. With a growing need for independence, children this age will enjoy more advanced types of toys such as bicycles. They may also take an avid interest in electronic games at this age. Be sure that they practice safety precautions when playing outdoors and ensure that you know the rating and content of any electronic games that they may play.
Toy Safety - Twelve Years and Over
Children in this age group are the most likely to suffer physical injuries from things like bicycles, roller blades, skateboards and trampolines. Always ensure that your children follow strict safety precautions when using this type of equipment. Helmets and knee pads can provide important protection from serious injuries that can result from the use of these types of toys. Also be sure that your children are aware of the dangers of traffic when they are playing outdoors. Adults who are driving nearby may have difficulty spotting children on bikes and skateboards, leading to an increased risk of serious injuries.
Additionally, children in this age group will likely take an even bigger interest in electronic games. Be sure you are familiar with the rating system for these games. If you are concerned about violent content and other issues relating to electronic games, it may be best to remain present when your child is playing them.
By following the simple recommendations outlined above, you'll be able to provide safe and enjoyable games for your children, regardless of their age.
This post was written as a guest post by Mums Mall– an online shopping comparison mall dedicated to helping mums get the best deals online when shopping for baby/maternity products, toys and children’s clothing.
For a range of toys for all ages, you could try Oldrids who stock an extensive collection of toys for all ages.