Halloween was made for fun, and it can stay that way with the right planning and precautions. Below, we share safety tips to help your family keep the "treat" in trick-or-treat.
Choose safe costumes and accessories.
Help your child avoid an unintentional injury by choosing a costume that:
- isn't too long or loose
- is lighter in color
- is flame retardant
You should also consider using makeup or nontoxic face paint instead of a mask. A mask can make it hard for your child to see and breathe. Be sure to test the makeup or face paint on your child's hand or arm before Halloween to check for an allergic reaction.
If your child's costume requires an accessory (like a wand or sword), make sure it is soft and flexible, or only use the accessory for pictures and leave it at home.
Walk with your child.
Children 12 and younger should never trick-or-treat without a parent. Follow these safety tips as you walk with your child:
- Keep an eye on your child at all times (don't use a mobile device when walking).
- Hold your child's hand or make sure he or she is always at a safe distance.
- Always walk on sidewalks or facing traffic if a sidewalk isn't available.
- Look both ways before crossing the street.
- Use a flashlight to light your path.
- Put reflective tape on your child's trick-or-treat bag.
- Have your child wear a glow-in-the-dark necklace or bracelet.
Set rules for teenage trick-or-treaters.
If your child is over 12 and mature enough to go without you, he or she should follow these rules:
- Only trick-or-treat in an area OK'd by your parent.
- Only trick-or-treat in a group—never alone.
- Do not enter a stranger's home or car.
- Return home at the time set by your parent.
Manage the candy.
Eat dinner before you go trick-or-treating to prevent bingeing and tummy aches at the end of the night. Let your child enjoy the holiday with a few pieces of candy, but then, put the remaining candy away in a kitchen cabinet to be eaten in moderation over the next few weeks.
Also, play it safe by checking your child's candy stash before he or she eats any of it. Throw out any candy that's unwrapped, and only accept homemade treats from people you know well. Halloween is fun, but accidents happen. Make sure your child knows how to call 9-1-1 in case of an emergency. Learn more about emergency care at The Christ Hospital.