Your Health 11-30-12 Safe toys, safe children

Toy shopping season is here and child safety should be at the top of your list.

For example, choking is one of the leading causes of toy-related deaths, and most of these choking deaths are due to tiny balls, latex balloons and small magnets.

The American Academy of Pediatrics and doctors at the Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center offer some gift-giving tips to make sure any gifts you buy for children are safe and age-appropriate.

Read all warning labels carefully.

Consider a child's age, interests and skill levels

Choose sturdy toys and avoid those with sharp edges and points.

Avoid giving children under age 3 any toys with parts that are smaller than 1 inch in diameter and 2 inches long. This includes button batteries found in some toys.

Avoid toy jewelry that may contain lead or cadmium, both of which can be harmful to children.

Don't give toys that must be plugged into an electrical outlet to children younger than 10.

Don't buy pull toys with strings longer than 12 inches.