Toy related injuries send a record number of kids to the E.R. every year, points outs a study carried out by Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. The study went on to elaborate that more than 3 million kids across the U.S. were treated in emergency rooms during the period 1990-2011 due to injuries caused by toys. Not only that, one child was rushed to the E.R every three minutes due to toys related injuries in the year 2011, one of the main culprits being toy scooters.

Now while toys are said to foster learning and creativity in kids besides helping improve on their cognitive skills, this study indicates that parents need to buy toys for their kids after a lot of careful deliberation.

Foot powered scooters were clearly mentioned as one of the leading causes of injury among kids. Children who were injured following scooter related accidents were three times more vulnerable to a dislocated bone or a fracture.

“The frequency and increasing rate of injuries to children associated with toys, especially those associated with foot-powered scooters, is concerning. This underscores the need for increased efforts to prevent these injuries to children. Important opportunities exist for improvements in toy safety standards, product design, recall effectiveness, and consumer education,” says Dr. Gary Smith, study author and director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy.

“All children should use safety precautions when using a scooter or other riding toys. The first three safety tips I give for preventing injuries on those toys are: 1. Wear a helmet. 2. Wear a helmet. 3. Wear a helmet. Buy a scooter, buy a helmet.”

More than half the toy-related injuries involved kids lesser than five years of age. Most injuries in kids less than three years of age were caused due to choking or accidentally swallowing foreign bodies. That amounts to nearly 14 choking accidents a day. Injuries caused due to riding toys increased as the kids got older.

“We know that’s an underestimate,” said Dr. Gary Smith. He’s the lead researcher on the study and the Director of the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital. “We know that those numbers are increasing. So it’s a call to action. We really do have a lot more work to do to provide safe toys for children”

When asked about the study’s limitations, Smith says it “only look(s) at children treated at American hospital emergency departments.” Missing are the numbers from urgent care centers and doctors offices, or those that don’t seek any medical care at all.

Dr Smith suggests any adults planning to gift a scooter over the holiday season to their loved ones to buy a well fitting helmet for the kid along with the scooter and later ensuring that the kid rides his vehicle only on a flat and dry surface with no vehicular traffic.

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