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  • Beware These Three Toys

    Published Dec. 08, 2014

    While fun to play with, some toys can cause serious eye injuries that last a lifetime. In fact, 1 in 10 children's eye injuries treated nationwide in emergency rooms stem from toys, according to a 2014 study.

    The American Academy of Ophthalmology recommends that parents avoid purchasing the following types of projectile-firing toys due to safety concerns. If your children are playing with these types of toys, help protect them by providing supervision as well as polycarbonate glasses to block flying objects from entering their eyes.

    1. Crossbows

    Girl aiming crossbow

    Some toy crossbows can shoot arrows nearly 150 feet. Even if arrows are foam and plastic, the impact at close range can cause serious eye damage. Typical injuries from plastic projectiles include corneal abrasions that can scar over when healed, permanently affecting vision.

    2. BB guns and airsoft guns

    Boy holding toy gun

    The force of pellets sprayed by BB and airsoft guns can cause retinal detachment and traumatic cataract. Both may result in blindness or severely limited vision and may require surgery.

    3. Darts

    Dart on board

    Steel lawn darts became a staple of outdoor fun but were banned in the late 1980s after a significant number of children sustained injuries and some died. Other types of darts remain on the market and can impact the eye, causing injuries such as bleeding in the eye (known as hyphema), which itself raises the risk of developing glaucoma later on.