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Tags: health and safety

Apple Bobbing: An Accident Waiting to Happen?

Permalink by Tikal, Categories: Learning Play, Family , Tags: apple bobbing, danger, eyes, games, health and safety, romans

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Apple bobbing: good old fashioned for bonfire parties and Halloween, or a health and safety menace that should be banned?

According to the organisers of a Didsbury Apple Bobbing event, it is too dangerous for our children to bob apples and instead the children were furnished with a pair of chopsticks and invited to bob using chopsticks!  The organisers were worried about the implications of accidents happening.

In another part of the country, a hospital eye consultant suggested children wear goggles when doing apple bobbing and that the stalks should be removed as they could poke an eye. In addition, it was advised to use bottled water as dirty water could lead to eye problems and ultimately blindness!

This does seem silly, however, the doctors in A&E do get to see some dreadful eye injuries each year. Scratches on the cornea for example made by stalks are apparently a real risk. Perhaps health and safety has a point!?

Apple bobbing dates back to the Romans. It was thought that you would see the image of your future husband or wife in the reflection of the shiny apple you picked with your teeth.

However, despite all the warnings, according to health experts, there is no risk to children's health and that common sense would rule that it was a simple game for children to enjoy rather than wrapping it up in red tape and health and safety rules.

There is little risk of infection by doing apple bobbing and it is not unsafe according to NHS Manchester. Indeed, a representative from the Institute of Occupational Safety and Health commented that there is no reason apple bobbing should be canceled due to health and safety issues.

So, go on, enjoy a spot of apple bobbing with the children this bonfire night before its banned!

What's Lurking Under Your Sink?

Permalink by Tikal, Categories: Babies, Health, Family , Tags: detergent, health and safety, home

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We all know to keep bleaches and household cleaners in a locked, child-proof cupboard, but accidental child poisonings rose by some 11% last year according to the Child Accident Prevention Trust.  How can this be?

It seems that detergent capsules have become more and more popular in homes: less packaging means they are environmentally more friendly and more economical to produce, less water content means they are cheaper to transport and less wasteful, so supermarkets and families have opted to buy them over the regular hefty boxes of detergent.

However, what we don't possibly realise is that the liquid inside the gel capsules is even more concentrated and therefore even MORE harmful for young children.  They are soft to touch, often a nice, bright colour, easy for little hands to hold... and more worryingly just the right size for a little mouth to nibble!

The storage containers they come in are often very easy to open too.  Last year, two hundred inquiries logged at the Child Accident Prevention Trust, were about these detergent capsules.

They are a new range of products that need to be treated with utmost caution and extreme care if we are to reduce the number of potentially dangerous accidents in the home.

Here's a reminder about storing household products:

  1. All household chemicals and cleaning products should be out of sight and in cupboards with child-proof locks.
  2. All harmful substances should be out of reach (not just under the sink or behind the toilet!)
  3. Move all cleaning products away from reach if you are interrupted by the phone or a visitor during your cleaning.
  4. Choose household cleaning products with child-resistant caps - but remember some children are ultra dextrous and can still open them!
  5. Opt for detergents/cleaners with a bittering agent which gives them a horrible taste and helps stop young children from swallowing them.
  6. Remember that all cigarettes, alcohol, perfume, aromatherapy oils and mouthwash can be poisonous to children.


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Hi! I'm Tikal the Toucan, the mascot for ToucanLearn. Follow my blog to find out interesting things relating to babies, toddlers and preschool children!

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