The holidays are here. Consumer Reports is offering some tips for parents on what they can do to keep their children safe from faulty toys this holiday season. The holidays account for more than half of the $22 billion in annual toy sales. In the wake of the recent recalls due to lead and other dangers, Consumer Reports has recommendations on what steps adults can take to protect children. Avoid giving metal jewelry, especially to young children. Many of these products have lead below the surface that children can swallow. Concerned parents can purchase a lead home test kit, but should remember they are not fool-proof. Pay close attention to toys with loose or small magnets. If swallowed, they can cause intestinal blockages. Unbranded toys from cheaper stores, vending machines or yard sales can be particularly hazardous. When it comes to buying toys for children, consumer reports says you should carefully follow the age appropriate grades on the packaging. Also, be careful with small balls, tricycles and balloons as these items are the leading causes of toy deaths for children. Most importantly use common sense when considering toys for all children, especially infants.
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