The name itself sounds safe but if airsoft guns are there on your child’s wish list, you must keep a close eye on safety. However, not that dangerous like other imitation firearms, an airsoft gun can be responsible for physical as well as social harm. These non-powder guns are just like real guns and based upon customization and upgrades, the electric airsoft gun pellet moves between 160 ft per second to 550 ft per second. Children use them to shoot 6 mm plastic pellets on each other or at target areas. Sounds fast, but these pellets when shot can even break a human’s skin.
These airsoft guns are sold in sporting goods as well as other retail stores. The increasing popularity has given rise to eye injuries. Eliot Nelson who is an injury prevention specialist from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) said that ‘the name is terribly misleading’. ‘No one should be permitted to use these without proper eye protection’.
What are the Risks?
People who don’t use eye protection are at high risk of eye injury as per (AAP). Airsoft pellets when hit the eye can lead to scratches, lens dislocation or blindness and even painful pooling of blood within the eye. Besides eye injuries, the customized pellets are known to get caught into the skin which then needs surgery to remove. Airsoft guns can lead to serious injuries if not used with proper care. The American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that children use paintball-style protective eyewear. Check out for a label which says the glasses meet ASTMF1776 protective standards.
Not All Air Guns are the same
Airsoft guns are sold close to the side of other non-powder guns such as BB guns which fire metal ball bearings, paintball guns which fire gelatinous balls filled with paint and pellet guns which fire small lead pellets. Springs, air, electricity and other gases assist to shoot the ammunition of the gun. One should not remove the tip. Metal pellet guns and BB guns are not made to be shot at the people. ‘They are clearly detailed as weapons’ as they can kill small animals said DR. Nelson.
Paintball and airsoft guns should be used in games to be shot at other people. They can give rise to welts on the skin and sometimes even break the skin. Dr Nelson said that ‘they can sting so make use of safety clothing if you do not wish to get stung’. For all these reasons, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) does not recommend an age when airsoft guns are declared safe. Parents should make their children understand the risks and force them to wear eye protection while playing with airsoft guns.
Dr Nelson said ‘the bottom line is that all of these guns are potentially dangerous and harmful’. Parents should be aware of these things and do not consider these guns as harmless toys. These guns can cause great harm to your kids when they play with them.