As the holidays approach and gift giving opportunities abound, thinking about eye care before purchasing can help protect your friends and loved ones while they have fun. December is Safe Toys and Gifts Month and these tips can help you identify the items to give and avoid.

Phoenix Eye Doctors

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Consider Age

When shopping for toys and gifts, it is important to consider the age appropriateness of items. Never give a toy designed for an older child to one who is younger since they may not yet have adequate reasoning or the coordination to use the toy in the way in which it is intended. Smaller children tend to turn most items into projectiles which can mean instant disaster. Toys with sharp or rigid edges can cause eye damage very quickly in the wrong hands. Read warnings, heed product labels, and supervise playtime — especially whenever a mixed age group is playing together.

Create Good Habits

Tools are a fantastic gift idea for many age ranges, but how do you give them with confidence that the recipient will safely use the item? When gifting to a child or young person, including a pair of safety glasses with the gift is a great way to encourage good habits and focus on eye care. Teaching him or her the proper way to use tools and reinforcing that message by also wearing safety glasses during operation will help illustrate the message that  vision protection is a very big deal.

Common Sense

Some items should not even be considered a possibility when deciding on toys and gifts. BB guns or other toy weapons that shoot projectiles are an obvious menace. Fireworks classified as toys are also extremely dangerous and in the interest of eye care should be left out of occasions. Be sure when giving athletic equipment of any sort that the appropriate safety equipment accompanies the gift, including the proper eyewear or goggles.

Any toy or gift could be dangerous when in the wrong hands. Consider the potential for harm before purchasing items for children under 14. Provide the right protective wear and set a good example for using gift items properly. Following these tips will help protect the precious vision of your loved ones so they may see clearly for decades to come.