Halloween kicks off the most magical time of the year, the unofficial start of the holiday season. Kids and adults alike get giddy with excitement at the prospect of dressing up, collecting goodies, and having lots of fun. Halloween night and the events leading up to it are perfect opportunities to let loose, but it is also an opportunity to be extra vigilant about your and your family’s safety.
Starting with some trick-or-treat basics, dress kids in light colored clothing or add glowing and/or reflective items to their costumes. Use flashlights and make sure kids are accompanied by a responsible adult at all times. Only visit houses that you are familiar with and stay close together. When you’re done, check all candy or food items collected to make sure wrappers are sealed, there are no sharp objects, and remove choking hazards for little kids.
According to SafeKids.org, a child is more than twice as likely to be hit by a car and killed on Halloween than any other day of the year. Be super-vigilant about safely crossing streets, even in quiet neighborhoods, and keep young children within arm’s reach. Remind everyone to cross in crosswalks and follow crosswalk signals.
Check your child’s costume for a good fit and make sure masks don’t obstruct your child’s vision to prevent trips and falls. Only visit well-lit houses and watch out for yard debris, outdoor toys and lawn decorations.
Pumpkin carving is another Halloween tradition that has the potential to be dangerous. To keep little fingers and hands safe, have kids draw the jack o’lantern face with a marker and then let the grown ups handle the knives. Kids love to scoop out the goop and can spend time separating the seeds while the carving is being done.
Finally, a quick word on nutrition – give your family a healthy dinner before trick-or-treating to help fill up their bellies and reduce the amount of candy they will want to eat later on. Separate out candy by type and ration it out over the next few days or weeks. Another great idea – implement the “parent tax” and have your kids share 33% of their candy with you!