Halloween is a festive and fun time of year for children (and adults). It’s the one time of year where you’re expected to play dress-up, overindulge in chocolate and sweets and play friendly tricks on your loved ones. But amidst all that playful debauchery, Halloween is also one of the most dangerous holidays for a child.
Here are a few tips on how to stay safe and have fun this Halloween season.
- Seeing kids in costume is one of my favorite parts of Halloween. Just be sure the costumes fit correctly and aren’t too loose or long – to avoid any trips, falls or other bumps in the night.
- Be sure to purchase costumes that are flame retardant to avoid any hazards near candles, luminaries or burning jack-o-lanterns.
- If possible, have your child wear face paint/makeup instead of a mask, which can obstruct their vision when walking on the roads or going up/down steps.
- Sometimes dressing up can create overexcitement in kids – especially those dressed in costumes with props. Be sure any costume accessories are made out of cardboard or some form of flexible material.
- It should be common sense, but just in case, here are my 3 “mind your manners” rules to trick or treating:
- #1 – Remind your child to always say “trick or treat” when they arrive on someone’s door step. You’d be surprised how many kids today just walk up and wordlessly wait for their candy payload.
- #2 – Advise your child that it’s impolite to take the candy. Instead they should always wait for the homeowner to give it to them. (Unless of course they tell the child to take the candy themselves. In this case, remind them to only take 1 or 2 pieces so that there will be plenty left for other trick or treaters.)
- #3 – Remind your child to say “thank you” at every house they visit. Casper the friendly ghost has manners. So should every other ghoul and goblin.
Trick or Treating
- Be sure to check with your Town to see when the designated hours are for trick or treating. You can usually find this online, from the local police or local cable access station.
- Plan out a safe trick or treat route in advance. Be sure to make note of any unsafe road hazards that you may pass while you are out, like roads without sidewalks or narrow bends.
- If you plan to be out after the sun sets, be sure to carry glow sticks or flashlights, and wear reflective material on your clothes and costumes.
- Young children should always be accompanied by an adult; during time when it is still light outside.
- For older kids going out on their own, remind them that there is safety in numbers. Always travel in a group, stay in well-lit, populated areas, and never accept rides from strangers.
- Never trick or treat at an unlit house, or one that you don’t know.
- If there are no sidewalks, be sure to walk on the left side of the street, so you are facing any oncoming traffic.
Treats / Candy
- Be sure to check all candy before you allow your kids to eat it.
- Don’t accept any homemade or unwrapped treats unless you have checked them and know the person giving them to you.
- Try to keep candy consumption to a minimum to avoid a ghoulish sugar overload!
- Have leftovers? Consider donating it to http://www.halloweencandybuyback.com and have it sent to troops serving overseas!
We hope you enjoyed these simple Halloween Trick or Treat Safety Tips. We’d love to hear any other recommendations you have!