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A Holiday Gift Guide Safe For Every Eye

By Annie – November 24, 2021

The American Academy of Ophthalmology has put together an “Ophthalmologist-Approved Holiday Gift Guide” for parents to help them find toys that are safe for their kids’ eyes. While there are specific toys that can cause serious damage, there are also specific toys that can cause a family to spend more together, and less time on the screen.

Keep these tips in mind when you start your holiday shopping:

Avoiding Certain Toys That Can Cause Serious Eye Injuries

Eyes are particularly vulnerable to injuries. And serious injuries to the eye can have life-long effects. Commonly reported injuries from toys include corneal abrasions and ocular hyphema. More severe trauma can lead to retinal detachment, ruptured eyeballs, and even blindness.

The good news is that most eye injuries can be easily prevented by following a few key safety tips:

  • Avoid purchasing toys with sharp, protruding, or projectile parts.
  • Make sure children are appropriately supervised when playing with potentially hazardous toys or games that could cause eye injuries.
  • Check the labels of laser products for evidence that the device complies with 21 CFR (the Code of Federal Regulations) Subchapter J.
  • If you give sports equipment, also give the appropriate protective eyewear with polycarbonate lenses.
  • Check labels for age recommendations and be sure to select gifts that are appropriate for a child’s age and maturity.
  • Keep toys that are made for older children away from younger children.

Safe, Screen-Free Gift Ideas

Arts and Crafts Supplies

Get your children’s creative juices flowing with different art and craft supplies that will guarantee less screen-time! From paint sets to coloring books, to easels and jewelry beads, your children will become little artistic masterminds with the right tools. Just be sure to check the recommended age limits.

Outdoor Inspired Gifts

Sports equipment like snow gear, roller skates, a trampoline, hiking boots, or the classic bicycle gift are all good ways to encourage healthy outdoor play. Have a kid athlete in your life? Get them the right protective eyewear for their sport of choice. For skiers or snowboarders, that means UV-protected goggles—cold weather does not shield the eyes from the sun!

Educational Games for All Ages

As your toddler’s hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills naturally develop, toys such as building blocks or puzzles become easier to use. Age-appropriate board games for learning how to count, tell time, memory games, and other educational themes are good options. For older kids, find classic board games in foreign languages—such as Guess Who or Scrabble—to practice basic language questions and grammar in a new language.

Social Card Games

Tabletopics Teen Edition or What Do You Meme are great for getting teen eyes up and away from their phones and interacting with friends and family. And let’s not forget a family favorite that takes HOURS to finish — Monopoly.

Ugly Produce Food Kit Subscriptions

These kits will surly get a few laughs and secretly encourage eye-healthy eating. There are services that deliver good produce not being sold on farms for cosmetic reasons straight to your door. Cook a meal together as a family or set your master chef teen up for success with these nutritious ingredients. Just make sure to forward them a copy of these kitchen eye safety tips.

A clearer future starts today.
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