Often forgotten when handling toys and gifts is the importance of safety.
It really is all fun and games until someone gets hurt, and it's important to remember that each gift, toy, or product comes with safety instructions that must be followed to avoid potential injury or fatality.
Did you know that there are an estimated 120,000 children treated in hospital emergency rooms for toy-related injuries every year? This is estimated by the CPSC - the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission.
While safety when handling gifts is most certainly relevant to children, the safety of any product regards everyone. Some products can easily catch fire when misused, and others might be a major trip, choke, or sharp hazard, depending on what it is.
The safety instructions vary greatly between products. They should always be read in accordance with the particular product and its guidelines, but here are some tips to follow when buying or using new toys and gifts for any occasion.
Choose Appropriate Toys
When purchasing a gift for someone, consider their age and ability to use the gift. If it is a child, what is age-appropriate? Will it be a choking hazard?
If it is a hair-straightener for a woman, have they ever used one before, and are they aware of all possible safety issues, such as catching fire if left on or burning?
Know The Product
Make sure that the product you receive or buy has clear safety guidelines and instructions. If it doesn't, you may either want to return it for being potentially unsafe or avoid buying it.
Every product that has a potential danger will usually show this in a big, clear WARNING indicator - remember to read this carefully prior to using it.
Warn When Required
If there is something you are familiar with about the product you are gifting, always be sure to warn the person of potential safety issues, even if it is something simple.
You could help them avoid injury this way, and while they might laugh about it initially, make sure they clearly understand that you care for their safety.
Do your research on products, always! Doing so might also prevent injury - there are many toys and products that have safety recalls due to complications with the functioning or design.
Performing a simple Google search on the product you want to buy or are about to use might help you be more aware of any potential dangers that others have experienced. The first results that show up might also indicate faults with the product.
We all want to embrace the joy of gifts, but it is crucial to remember the safety that goes along with every product. Gifting is a fun, enjoyable experience, but getting hurt is definitely not.
It's important to remember these safety practices to prevent injury for both yourself and/or others!