So, you still have to do your holiday shopping, huh?!  Nice job Early Bird!  I’m sure your dad will enjoy his last-minute tie. 

If you’re shopping for kids, you should take a quick look at this year’s list of hazardous toys compiled by World Against Toys Causing Harm, Inc. (W.A.T.C.H.)

Poo-Dough Google Image Labeled for Reuse 16035968459_59e0200e4f_b.jpg

You’ll first notice Poo-Dough, which is like Play-Doh except its creators should go to jail.  But Poo-Dough doesn’t make the list because it’s disgusting.  It makes the list because it contains wheat and thus could cause allergic reactions.  So next year I suppose we should expect gluten-free Poo-Dough. 

You’ll also notice a doctor play set on the list.  Yup.  A toy designed to encourage health and wellness is considered a risk for ingestion and choking injuries.  As Commander Buck Murdock said, “Irony can be pretty ironic sometimes.”

According to the journal Clinical Pediatrics, toy-related injuries are up 40 percent in the last 24 years, with one U.S. child having to go to the emergency department every three minutes!  Poor kid!  I spoke to some emergency physicians who said the toy most responsible for recent injuries is the Razor.  Now, before you scratch your head wondering how Hasbro can legally offer a shaving kit to toddlers, let me inform you that the Razor is a slim foot-powered scooter that allows riders to quickly propel themselves down the sidewalk and right into the ER.

Razor Scooter Google Image Labeled for Reuse 2491293180_6542e8d5d1_b.jpg

I find it’s tough to avoid injury these days when opening toys. It’s easier for kids to open allegedly childproof prescription bottles than it is for adults to remove toys from their packaging.  The cardboard and tape are military grade.  The plastic is made by the Kevlar Corporation.  Poor Elmo is crucified to his cardboard.  Elsa and Anna are in wrist restraints (and seemingly chemically sedated too).  On Christmas morning, frustrated dads across the country might end up using actual razors to open their kids’ presents … which could very easily propel the dads en masse to the ER for accidental lacerations … which they might actually enjoy more than receiving your last-minute tie.

Happy Holidays!

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The Healthy Humorist®—Brad Nieder, MD—is a doctor, funny speaker and clean comedian who believes laughter is the best medicine ... unless you have giggle bladder incontinence.  Dr. Brad dispenses healthcare humor with wellness advice and an uplifting message to audiences across the country.  (, (303) 364-9061,, @HealthyHumorist)

Copyright © 2015 Brad Nieder, MD, CSP