Child Choking Hazards Can Be Anywhere in Your Home
Age-appropriate toys are a vital part of every little one’s growth and learning process. While children at play appear to just be having fun, the use of toys helps them develop important motor, reasoning, and creative skills. Unfortunately, inappropriate use of toys can lead to injury or death, most often in the form of choking on small parts. While it’s possible for a child to choke on just about anything, especially bite-sized foods, the vast majority of child choking hazards for children under the age of 3 come in the form of small parts of toys. With the holiday gift-giving season fast approaching, it’s time to give serious consideration to the toys and games you plan to give to the children in your life.
Some Choking Hazards Are Less Obvious Than Others
Child choking hazards can come in very obvious forms, but you may be surprised to find that other unexpected hazards may be present in your home. A balloon, for example, can easily be inhaled if a child is attempting to blow it up and the material can block the child’s airway. Another surprising hazard is the filling in so-called “bean bag” furniture and toys, which are common in a child’s room or play area. Children are naturally curious about what’s inside, and a small rip or leak may lead to the discovery and inhalation of the foam pellets that make up the filling. Other hidden dangers include forgotten toys that are left on the floor, stuffed under a couch cushion, as well as batteries and magnets.
Keep a Watchful Eye on Game Pieces and Toy Jewelry
Essentially, anything small enough to be swallowed can pose a choking hazard. While some dangers are more obvious than others, never underestimate what a child may swallow. Any small household item can pose a risk, but special attention must be paid to those small toys that will attract a child’s attention – items like action figure accessories, game pieces, and play jewelry.
There are a few things parents and caretakers can do to ensure that children do not choke on toys. First, it’s important to remain vigilant about the kinds of toys a child in your care is exposed to. Pay careful attention to the child choking hazards printed on the packaging of toys. Safety mandates require age-related choking warnings on any toys with small enough parts for a child to swallow and potentially choke on. This means not only staying mindful of the toys you buy for your children, but also the toys and games any older children or members of your household may play with.
Another helpful way to avoid choking hazards is to make sure you know emergency procedures like the Heimlich maneuver in case your little one does swallow a small toy. The maneuver is different for different age groups and sizes, so make sure you know the technique that works best for your child to avoid exacerbating the injury or harming your child further. Hospitals, fire stations, and other facilities often give free or low-cost emergency classes that can help you learn these life-saving techniques.
If Something Goes Wrong Anyway
Unfortunately, you may do everything right and still end up with an injured child, or worse. In the worst-case scenario, a child may become injured or die due to negligence of the toy manufacturer or seller. Depending on the predictability of the choking hazard and other factors, it may be necessary to consult legal counsel if your child is injured or killed after swallowing small toy parts. An experienced, informed personal injury attorney can help you determine what your options are for your particular circumstance.
For Additional Information
Call Aslin Tutuyan For a Free Evaluation of Your Claim
Aslin Tutuyan is a personal injury attorney with The Mandell Law Firm in Woodland Hills, California. Mandell Law is an aggressive personal injury law firm serving clients throughout the San Fernando Valley, the Greater Los Angeles area, and Southern California. Experienced and reputable, our attorneys provide hands-on care and sincere commitment to victims of personal injury and harms of all kinds, including defective products and negligence. Contact Aslin Tutuyan for a free consultation at 818.886.6600.