Halloween is a fun time for children, but it also is an important time to be extra vigilant for possible safety hazards so that your children have a fun and safe Halloween.
Here’s 8 Halloween safety tips from costumes to candy:
- Avoid costumes with excessive flowing fabric, such as capes or sleeves. Loose clothing can easily brush up against a jack-o-lantern or other open flame, causing your child’s costume to catch on fire.
- Make sure your child’s costume fits properly. Oversized costumes and footwear, such as clown or adult shoes, can cause your child to trip and fall, bringing them home with more scrapes and bruises than candy. Avoid wearing hats that will slide over their eyes.
- If possible, choose a brightly colored costume that drivers can spot easily. If not, decorate the costume with reflective tape and stickers. Other fun accessories that help children be seen when trick-or-treating in the dark are glow sticks or flashlights. While glow sticks are good for visibility, remember that the liquid in glow sticks is also hazardous, so parents should remind children not to chew on or break them.
- Accessorize with flexible props, such as rubber swords or knives. Inflexible props can cause serious injury in case of a fall. Choose face paint and make-up whenever possible instead of masks, which can obstruct a child’s vision. Apply face paint or cosmetics directly to the face, and make sure it is non-toxic and hypoallergenic. If a mask is worn, be certain it fits securely and cut the eye holes large enough for full vision.
Curfew & Crosswalks
- Always supervise children under the age of 13. Older children should trick-or-treat in a group, and a curfew should be established for them. Attach the name, address and phone number (including area code) of children under age 13 to their clothes in case they get separated from adults. Have each child carry a cell phone or some loose change in case they need to call home or get lost.
- Children should only go to well-lit houses and remain on the porch within street view. Teach your child to cross the street only at crosswalks or intersections. Make sure he understands never to cross between parked cars and to always look both ways before crossing. Remind your child to stay on the sidewalk, if possible, and to walk facing traffic. Children should walk, not run, and avoid using shortcuts across backyards or alleys.
- Remind your child not to eat any treats before you have a chance to examine them thoroughly for holes and punctures. Throw away all treats that are homemade or unwrapped.
- Parents of food-allergic children must read every candy label in their child’s Halloween bag to avoid a potentially life-threatening situation for the child.
Courtesy of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta, a not for profit organization, which is committed to enhancing the lives of children through excellence in patient care, research and education. Managing more than half a million patient visits annually at three hospitals and 17 neighborhood locations, Children’s is one of the largest clinical care providers for children in the country. Visit www.choa.org for more information.