Noisy Toys Can Damage Children’s Hearing

December 10, 2007

Noisy Toys Can Damage Hearing

Noisy toys can damage children’s hearing, and The Canadian Association of Speech-Language Pathologists (CASLPA) on Monday urged the government to lower maximum noise levels allowed. While the Hazardous Products Act sets toy noise levels at 100 decibels, CASLPA said that’s too high because children may hold toys near their ears. The International Standards Organization limits toy noise to 85 decibels, while the World Health Organization limits it to 75 decibels.


CASLPA spokeswoman Chantal Kealey said: “It is essential for parents to know that excessively noisy toys have the potential to harm their children’s hearing if they are not played with as intended…as a rule of thumb, if you have to raise your voice above the noise level of a toy to be heard, then the noise is too loud and could be causing damage to your child’s hearing.”

According to the Hearing Foundation of Canada, toy manufacturers aren’t required to label toys with the amount of decibels produced.

CASLPA suggests that parents follow these tips to avoid damage to children’s hearing:

  • Reduce the time your child spends with noisy toys, or remove the batteries of noisy toys
  • Listen to the toy yourself before making a purchase
  • Purchase toys with volume control
  • Discuss with children the proper way to handle their toys. Toys should be played with at arm’s length, not at face/ear level.
  • Buy alternate toys such as books and puzzles that target language and literacy skills.

Learn more about how to find healthy toys for your children and how to avoid toxic toys.

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