Loom bands are one of today’s most popular toys. As a matter of fact, the Duchess of Cambridge even wore one loom band bracelet on her last trip to New Zealand. Even a legend such as David Beckham had done the same. In this highly modernized era filled with so many gadgets like iPads, smartphones, laptops, and tablets, it is incredibly fascinating to find a new trend which seems to be catching up with people of all ages who are supposed to be breathing nothing but social media by now.
Despite the craze people have over rubber bands, it has been found that loom bands can prove to be fatal once inhaled by children. According to the Journal of Laryngology and Otology, loom bands can choke children and cause their death once they are not brought to the medics immediately. This is why many medical practitioners worldwide are warning their adult patients to supervise their children while playing loom bands.
It has been reported that most foreign bodies can be easily removed from children once tiny objects have been stuck in their nose; however, once extremely small objects like loom bands have been inhaled, it can cause cardio respiratory arrest, and even death. Dr. Iain Bohler, a surgical registrar, has reported that he had experienced a situation where two children put the s-shaped hooks that come along with loom band bracelets into their nose. One of the two even choked and swallowed the hook. On another scenario, two children got loom bands stuck inside their nasal passages. It was extremely dangerous, so it demanded “local anaesthetic and crocodile forceps” in order to get the toys out. (Wilkinson, 2014)
In addition to this, it has also been reported that the plastic trinkets that come along with loom bands have cancer-causing chemicals that may lead to negative effects on children’s health. In Midlands and the South, The Entertainer had pulled out loom band charms from their eighty stores after the test results confirmed that some of the loom bands have high levels of phthalates (Harley, 2014). For toy stores all across the globe, children’s safety is always of paramount importance, this is why The Entertainer, a famous independent toy store, made the decision to value the demands of their customers and remove all loom bands from sale as they initiate full investigation regarding the matter.
RMS International Ltd., in response, clarified that not all loom bands pose cancer risks to its users. According to their spokesperson, only a number of PVC loom bands have phthalates that can potentially put people, especially children with weak immune system, in danger. In fact, after discovering that there are PVC loom charms that are dangerous to children, RMS International Ltd. automatically suspended all of its imports of loom bands into the United Kingdom to prevent bigger problems to arise.
Loom bands are still being continuously imported and exported until today. The best thing that parents can do as their children play with the colourful rubber bands and the charms that come along with it is to make sure that their children will not put it in their ears, nose, and mouth. Furthermore, it is almost important to ensure that the toys they buy for their children are safe and PVC certified.
Harley, N. (2014). Loom band charms removed from sale over cancer fear. Retrieved from
Wilkinson, E. (2014). Loom bands ‘inhalation danger’ to young children. Retrieved from