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  • Here's a List of 2018's Most Dangerous Toys for Your Child

    The market is flooded with cheap and unregistered toys. Be careful!
    by Kitty Elicay .
Here's a List of 2018's Most Dangerous Toys for Your Child
PHOTO BY iStock
  • Christmas is a wonderful time for fulfilling your children’s dream toy list, but it still pays to be extra careful when buying toys for your kids. A new report by EcoWaste Coalition, a local non-profit organization, cite fidget spinners as this year’s most dangerous plaything.

    “The market is flooded with cheap and unregistered toys whose quality, safety and suitability cannot be guaranteed. Under the situation, consumers, particularly parents, will have a huge responsibility to play in terms of picking the right toy for children that will not pose harm to their young bodies and minds,” said Thony Dizon, chemical safety campaigner of EcoWaste Coalition.

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    The group released a list of items they bought from retailers in Divisoria, Manila, and which they scanned for lead content using a portable X-ray Fluorescence (XRF) analytical device. Out of 100 sampled toys, 32 indicated high levels of lead and other toxic metals.

    A fidget spinner had 198,900 parts per million (ppm) of lead. The Philippines has a limit of 90 ppm total lead content for the lead in paint, according to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Administrative Order 2013-24.

    The toy samples had no information and warning about their lead content and were all inadequately labeled, according to EcoWaste. They also lack the required market authorization from health authorities.

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    A list of toys and gift items that had lead content above the 90 ppm limit

    These toys have lead content that's way above the limit of 90 parts per million.
    PHOTO BY courtesy of EcoWaste Coalition
    1. A red and yellow coated “Naruto Shippuden” fidget spinner – 198,900 ppm
    2. A tall yellow-painted “Hi, I’m Monkey” vacuum flask – 33,400 ppm
    3. A short yellow-painted “Despicable Me” vacuum flask – 28,600 ppm
    4. A green “Mickey Mouse” glass cup – 25,800 ppm
    5. A yellow “Spongebob” class cup – 24,300 ppm
    6. A “Wonderful” xylophone – 9,696 ppm
    7. Several “Kai Xin” laser toys with lead content ranging from 630 to 4,632 ppm
    8. A mini xylophone – 1,994 ppm
    9. “Funny Toys” lizards – 1,885 ppm
    10. Toy farm animals – 1,161 ppm
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    According to the World Health Organization (WHO), high levels of lead exposure in children can impair their brain and central nervous system, causing a coma, convulsions, and even death. There is no known safe level of lead exposure, says WHO, and “the neurological and behavioral effects of lead are believed to be irreversible.”

    “Some toys may contain undisclosed chemical ingredients such as lead that can interfere with the growth and development of a child,” said Dr. Erle Castillo, a toxicologist at Medical Center Manila. According to Castillo, exposure to lead even at low doses can affect a child’s health over time, damage brain development, and result to decreased intelligence as measured by IQ points, lower school performance, and behavioral problems.

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    Apart from lead content, the EcoWaste Coalition also urged consumers to avoid giving dolls, soft balls, and squeaky toys made of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) plastic, which may contain toxic additives such as lead stabilizers and phthalate plasticizers.

    Other things to watch out for, according to EcoWaste Coalition, are toys with small parts. These may accidentally be ingested and cause choking or get pushed into the nostrils or ears. (Click here for what you can do when an object gets stuck in your child’s nose.)

    Similarly, toys with pointed or sharp edges can injure the eyes or cut the skin. There are also toys with the potential to cause blunt force injury or trauma. Lastly, toys with cords longer than 12 inches may cause strangulation.

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    According to a report by the U.S. Public Interest Research Group Education Fund, balloons cause more choking deaths among kids than any other toy or children’s product as it can get stuck in children’s throats. In the United States, balloons should not be marketed for children under eight.

    Before buying toys for your children, make sure that it has passed quality and assessment checks by the Food and Drug Administration, the agency in charge of regulating toys. Carefully read product labels and avoid buying unlabeled and unregistered toys. Make sure that the toys are suited to a child’s age and behavior, too.

    Yes, inexpensive toys may seem sulit, but if it will compromise your child’s health and safety, it’s best to think twice.

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