When it comes to our children, parents are faced with multitudes of decisions for multitudes of things. Like their health and general well-being for starters. We make sure they are clothed, fed and safe. We make sure they are getting ample rest and a well-round life that provides them education, physical exercise and socialization with others. We do these things so they can go forth into the outside world and be successful human beings.
We make sure they are age appropriate and there aren’t any possible choking hazards or other possible injury that can happen. But what we don’t do is look at the toys we choose for them are environmentally safe. We should select their toys to be free of harmful chemicals, heavy metals, sharp edges and synthetic materials. A large portion of toys today contain a toxin that is all too common in toys: PVC (Polyvinyl Chloride) has been linked delay in brain development and yet it is found flooring, food packaging and even pacifiers.
The toy aisle at your local big-box store has become almost as dangerous as a toxic minefield. There are highly flammable ingredients in the toys and their package such as BPA, a carcinogen; that frequently leaches out of toys when it is heated. Or polyurethane, which is a petroleum product that contains formaldehyde and is dangerous. There is more concentration on making vehicles environmentally safe than there is on the toys that our kids play with.
There Are Environmentally Safe Toys Available
When choosing toys for your children, or birthday gifts for family and friends, stay natural and choose toys made from all natural materials. For instance, toys that are made from non-stained, natural, solid wood are going to be safe for the kids and environmentally safe too. Or toys made from organic textiles such as cotton, felt, hemp and wool.
Buy locally so that you aren’t contributing to the profits of those massive size companies that ship from overseas or across the country, adding to the emissions problem we have already. It is also better to support local small businesses as opposed to adding another dollar to the big company pockets, which outsource their products. The countries that are contributing to an unsafe environmentally are China, India and Taiwan.
Do your research and read labels, watching for toys that have been recalled. These are toys that aren’t just an environmentally safe issue but safety for your children too. And choose them toys that will have a long life-span as well. Toys that are labeled “child friendly” aren’t necessarily safe.
Choose toys that will have a longer life span and can actually be passed on to younger children. If a toy can’t be passed on to another child, look for a way to repurpose it and get more use from it. This is an effective way to save money and be environmentally safe too by keeping it out of the landfills.