10 things to remember when buying gifts for children this holiday season

‘Tis the season for shopping! As you search for the best clothes or toys to put a smile on your child’s face, make sure those items do not put them in harm’s way too.

When it comes to finding the perfect gift, the main considerations are usually the joy that the gift can bring, along with its price. Evaluation of the safety of the gift, however, is often overlooked. Just like monitoring the food eaten by your child and the shows watched, the same vigilance should also be applied to what is played with or worn.

Toy Safety

Here are some tips to keep in mind when buying that adorable fluffy plush toy or cool robot as a gift this year:

#1 Do your research before buying

Go online and read comments about the toy or talk to your friends or relatives about it. Doing your research will give you the assurance on the suitability and safety of the toy for your child. It will also prevent you from buying the wrong toy, and in turn, save you time and money.

#2 Heed the age recommendation

Much research and testing went into creating the toy and sussing out the right users according to age.

While you may feel confident that your child can handle toys that are recommended for older children, he/she may not understand how the toy works or how to play with it without getting hurt. Age recommendation is there to make sure that your child is fully capable to play with the toy.

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If you have children of different age groups at home, remember to keep the toys of the older ones out of reach from the younger ones.

#3 Try it before buying

Ask the salesperson to demonstrate how the toy works and try it out to determine if your child can easily play with it. Inspect it to check for any sharp edge and loose or missing parts. Check also for any dent or damage to the item or packaging.

#4 Read manuals and safety labels to equip and protect

Reading the instruction manual and safety labels will certainly help you operate the toy correctly. More importantly, doing so will help you be aware of any safety measures that need to be taken.

#5 Remove batteries and unplug when not in use

When left inside toys or any product for extended periods of time, batteries may leak harmful chemicals. Remove the batteries to prevent your child from coming into contact with them. If you choose to purchase a rechargeable toy, do not leave the toy plugged into the socket after it has been fully charged to prevent it from overheating.

#6 Be vigilant when buying toys for infants and toddlers

Young children explore the world using their senses. They will probably try to put something non-edible into their mouth, or touch things that could break, pinch or cut their fingers. Do not buy toys that are small enough to fit inside your child’s mouth or nose as they could pose a choking hazard.

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When buying toys for young children, you can exercise discretion to determine if the gift is right for your child but it is preferable to get a toy with information on age appropriateness. Pay close attention to the specified age recommendation to make sure that infants and toddlers do not get the wrong toy.

Continue reading to know the safety measures to take when choosing what your children will wear this holiday season…

Kids in holiday pajamas and party dresses are the cutest! Before you shop for something festive for your children to wear during the holiday season, bear the following tips in mind:

Buying clothes that are safe for children

#7 Size matters when it comes to safety

Anything too big may cause children to trip over while anything too tight may make it difficult for the little ones to move around. Make sure each piece is the exact fit.

Choose clothes that are age-appropriate. Older children will know better not to put buttons into their mouth, unlike infants. Choosing safer methods of fastening, such as snaps or Velcro, are best for young children.

#8 Avoid anything that can pose a choking hazard

That rhinestone-studded top may look really cute on your baby but a teeny piece of rhinestone is enough to cause her to choke. Inspect each piece of clothing to ensure that objects such as buttons, zipper heads, bows, beads or gems are tightly secured and cannot be pulled off easily and accidentally ingested.

#9 Cut the loose strings

Long drawstrings, fringes, capes or wings may make great fashion statements but a loose extension of the apparel can get caught in another object (think electric fan or door), entrapping your child or even potentially strangling him/her.

#10 Wash new clothes before wearing

Washing can help to remove residual chemicals or dirt left on the new piece of clothing. It is best to err on the side of caution and give new clothes a good wash before letting your child wear them.

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Fill your holiday season with good cheer and family fun. Give yourself a holiday that is worry-free and your children a safe environment to celebrate and make merry.

The Consumer Goods Safety Requirements (CGSR) Regulations aims to make your homes safer for your family. Visit www.spring.gov.sg/productsafety to stay up-to-date on product safety alerts or consumer safety tips.