Hot Toy or Death Trap? Learn to Spot the Difference!


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Scooters can be great fun, but they are also a leading cause of child injuryIt’s that time of year again, when your children are making their holiday gift lists and you start figuring out exactly how to nab their chart-toppers without completely breaking the bank.

Unfortunately, according to a study published in Clinical Pediatrics, some of the most popular toys this season could be extremely dangerous—just consider the finding that a child is treated in the ER for a toy-related injury every three minutes in this country!

To find the toys that were the worst offenders, researchers at the Center for Injury Research and Policy at Nationwide Children’s Hospital reviewed data compiled by the National Electronic Injury Surveillance Service between 1990 and 2011. 

Their findings were quite frightening: during that period, the injury rate has risen by over 40%, seeing a sharp spike beginning in 2000, when foot-powered scooters first became popular. In fact, these scooters and other riding toys are responsible for 42% of all the injuries suffered by children ages 5-17, many of them due to falls and collisions (not to mention sprains and fractures that happen when little feet don’t quite step the right way to put their scooters in motion.)

While these scooter-related accident statistics are scary, they shouldn’t necessarily keep you from giving one of these toys to your child—it just means you need to be smart about how these products are used.

If you are letting your little one ride a scooter, make sure to wear appropriate safety gear every time they hop on and, if they’re new to foot-powered-fun, make sure they do a bit of practice riding in safe, supervised conditions before hitting the streets for a longer excursion.

Every parent wants to be their child’s holiday hero when it comes to gift, but protecting our little ones’ health has to be the number one priority. If your child is dealing with an injury of the foot or ankle, schedule an appointment to see Dr. Andrew Schneider as soon as possible so that he or she can get back to playing!

Dr. Andrew Schneider
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Dr. Andrew Schneider is a podiatrist and foot surgeon at Tanglewood Foot Specialists in Houston, TX.