As Halloween approaches, it’s important that you focus on safety so your kids can focus on having fun. To prevent any incidents from happening, here are some safety measures to keep in mind.
To start with, costumes should fit well and allow for easy movement. While this does come in handy if your child needs to run in an emergency situation, it can also be useful when it comes to avoiding small bumps and bruises. The less awkward tripping there is, the better the night will go. Furthermore, too much lace or excess fabric can end up being a fire hazard, especially if your neighborhood likes to light up with lanterns.
Color is one of the most important aspects when it comes to costume safety. Dark colors make it much harder for drivers to see them at night, which can lead to unfortunate accidents and close calls. If a dark color is necessary for a costume to work, consider adding reflective elements or glow sticks.
Using face paint instead of masks is another way to make it easier for your child to move. If they can’t see their surroundings, they could get into an accident.
Firstly, make sure that young children are supervised at all times. Don’t allow them to go off trick-or-treating on their own, even if it’s with groups of their friends. It can be easy to lose track of your small kids even when you’re accompanying them, so keep constant vigilance.
Secondly, you want to make sure that your small children have your emergency contact information on them at all times. A small tag can be inconspicuous enough to not ruin the appearance of the costume, but also easily found if someone was looking for it.
For children that are older, you may not be able to accompany them and keep a close eye on all of their activities. They may want to go off with their own friends while you look over the smaller children. In these cases, nothing is more valuable than education. Explain safety measures and concerns to your older children, then trust that they can follow them.
- Encourage them to trick-or-treat in groups rather than going off alone. Even being paired with a single friend can be enough to prevent most problems.
- Warn them not to run or mess around too much, especially not when near streets or groups of small children. Accidents happen, but they happen more often in poor visibility conditions when people are behaving erratically.
- Depending on your child, over-consumption of unhealthy candy may be an issue. Rather than just telling them not to eat candy, consider providing them with healthier alternatives that will fill them up and leave them with less room for nutrition-less sweets.
- Though it may sound obvious, impress upon them that they should not go into strangers’ homes or cars. Most candy is safe, but they should be suspicious about any candy that has an already opened wrapper.
- Make sure they check in with you from time to time. Cell phones make this a lot easier than it used to be, when kids had to trek all the way back home to let their parents know they were alright.
It can be tempting to take your pet when you go trick-or-treating, but be aware of your pet’s limits. You don’t want them to take them out into an environment of sensory overload where they’ll be terrified and barking at everything. It may be better to keep them inside, where they won’t scare small children or get scared themselves.
Keeping them inside also makes it much less likely that they will be able to get out and run away. In the chaos of Halloween, it can be especially difficult to track down a missing pet.
Happy Halloween from all of us at Sacred Heart Emergency Room!