Written by: Alex Martins-Hesp, Published: 18 December 2020
He may be making a list, and he may be checking it twice, but do you think even Father Christmas knows what toys to avoid to keep your eyes safe from harm? Christmas can be such a joyful time of year with children's excitement of what presents will be waiting under the tree. But have you ever considered that those gifts might risk your child's vision? Here are our top 5 eye hazard toys to watch out for this Christmas.
The gooey colourful substance that has become some parents worst clean up nightmare has also become a 2020 trend! With influencers such as Karina Garcia and Talisa Tossell leading the march on slime obsession, you can be sure this squidgy AMSR will be on your kids' list.
Keep an eye on the ingredients, especially when it comes to slime making kits and if you see the word BORAX or SODIUM BORATE...avoid, avoid, avoid! Even though borax acid is low in toxicity when consumed, it can be corrosive to the eye. Other side effects include:
Laser tag is a game loved by many young hearts but do not be fooled when you see "laser pointer" on the list to Santa. Any gadget that has a bright LED light element should be kept out of children's hands. Some laser pointer lights can be so intense that when shone in the eye, it can cause permanent vision loss. Even high powered flashlights can be considered a danger as
they can cause temporary blindness, putting the child in harm's way.
Did you know?
It's a crime to aim a laser pointer at or near an aeroplane or helicopter as you may blind or damage the operator's camera. If found guilty, you could be facing a hefty fine or even a prison sentence. To avoid an awkward conversation with a police officer, it's probably best to skip the laser pointer for your child's Christmas present.
Nerf guns or ANY toy that shoots a projectile
Even if it shoots lightweight pellets or foam darts, it still poses as a major eye hazard risk. There are toy guns that can shoot up to distances of 75 feet, and the darts move at speeds fast enough to cause severe eye trauma, ESPECIALLY when used at close range. A nine-year-old boy sadly lost his eye after being shot by a pellet from a Nerf gun, so it may be best to leave this one out of your child’s stocking.
Aerosol string a.k.a silly spray
Though an entertaining way for kids to make a mess, unfortunately, the chemicals in these products can cause mild-to-severe ocular surface injuries. Hexabromobenzene, dibutyl phthalate, and dichloromethane are some of the hazardous substances that can be found in silly string. These chemicals can cause eye irritation and chemical conjunctivitis. There is also the risk of corneal abrasion occurring if the aerosol string is fired in the eye from a close range.
Source: Factre Public
Long, pointy toys
We are talking about the "expelliarmus" wands, the "Luke, I am your father" lightsabers, and the "YOU SHALL NOT PASS" wizard staffs. Though useful for dramatic role play as our favourite hero moments, these long pointy toy props can also lead to dramatic "poke your eye out" moments. Best to avoid the Christmas trip to A&E and leave this off the gift shopping list.