December marks the holiday season and it also makes sense that it’s Safe Toys and Gifts month.

Toy recalls are on the rise with 2007 marking a whopping 19 million toys recalled across the globe, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission. In fact, 72% of toy-related injuries occurred to kids under the age of 15 years old.

Here are some safety tips to keep in mind before wrapping those topsy and placing them under the Christmas tree.

Choose toys that are age-appropriate:    Guidelines on toys are not just for educational enjoyment but because they could contain choking hazards such as small parts that could detach.

Check labels:   Look for a label with ATSM on the packaging. ATSM stands for American Society for Testing and Materials standards. This safety rating means that the toy has been examined closely and has met those safety standards in place. It never hurts to have that extra level or examination.

Buy accompanying safety equipment:   If your child is getting a bicycle, skateboard, scooter or sports’ equipment invest in a helmet (buy new not used), kneepads or elbow pads.

Be aware of the risks and dangers of lead poisoning:   Many of the toys still out there today contain lead in the paint. If you have any doubt have your child wash he/her hands after playing with those suspected toys and never allow a child under three-years-old to play with them.

Crayons, markers and art supplies should be labeled non-toxic and NEVER allow a child under three to play with toys that have loose parts such as magnets which are a big danger.

Last but not least, you can always check for a toy recall by visiting