With these tips, parents can avoid holiday hazards for kids

LOS ANGELES (KABC) -- Gifts, treats and beautiful decorations are everywhere during the holiday season. But many of these items can cause accidental harm.

Health officials say during the week of Christmas, holiday-related injuries are at their height. Since 2006, California emergency rooms have seen 845,000 of these types of injuries.

At Shawn's Christmas tree lot in Culver City, 4-year-old TJ McNeil and his sister, 2-year-old old Nahla, are quiet and polite. But at home, their dad, Traves McNeil says they tend to get into everything.

"Oh, yes they do!" he said.

Dr. Cyrus Rangan is the medical director of the California Poison Control System. He says the holidays bring about 15,000 decoration injuries and $16 million in property loss.

"This is the time when we are bringing in products into the home that are not normally there during the year," he said, "And in addition to that we have a higher level of activity in the home that sometimes make it a little more difficult to watch young children."

Rangan rolled out his "Table of Trouble." On it are edible cannabis gummies and chocolate bars that look a lot like regular candy. Ingesting large amounts can be toxic to young children. Button batteries, peanuts and tiny toys parts are all choking hazards.

"Jewelry, toys," Rangan said. "These products are very problematic as well. Here we have candy gummy worms, but then you have these rubbery toys that look just like them."

Beware of fumes from flocking and glitter sprays. And look for ornaments that don't shatter.

Rangan said, "We recommend people try to get as many of those ornaments as possible. So if they do fall on the floor at least they stay intact."

Once you've survived all the potentially dangerous decorations, Rangan warns we're not out of the woods yet. The day after Christmas is one of the busiest days of the year for emergency rooms.

Ten percent of these ER visits are drug and alcohol-related. Some are slip-and-falls and many involve young kids and the tons of toxic things they swallow. When in doubt, Rangan says call 9-1-1 or California Poison Control at (800) 222-1222.

McNeil said, "We are going to put extra emphasis to show them that this is not candy. This is not what you think it is."

And TJ and Nala tend to keep an eye on each other.

"He's going to look out for his sister and she's going to tell on her brother," McNeil said.

But nothing beats a parental pair of watchful eyes.
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