University of Pennsylvania Health System

Penn Health and Wellness

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Halloween Safety Tips for Parents

Halloween is fast approaching. Soon, the streets will be filled with ghosts, goblins, princesses and cowboys. To help make this year's festivities a trick-free treat, follow these simple safety tips:

For the Young Ones

  • Spotted in the dark. Bright-colored costumes are more likely to be seen after dark. Add reflective tape to your child’s costume or to the trick-or-treat bag so you and cars can keep an eye out. 
  • See and breathe easy. If the costume has wigs or beards, make sure they don’t cover your child’s eyes, noses, or mouths. Same goes for wearing a mask.
  • Toxic makeup. Consider using nontoxic face paint or makeup. Test the face paint or makeup on your child's arm or hand before applying; ensuring the paint doesn't irritate the skin.
  • Don’t trip. Try to avoid oversized and high-heeled shoes and costumes that have long fabric that can cause children to trip.
  • Home safe. Check all treats to make sure they are sealed. Throw out any candy with holes in the packages, spoiled items and any homemade foods from strangers.

For Parents with Older Kids

  • Be aware. If your child is trick-or-treating on their own, find out the route they'll be taking.
  • Safer in groups. Make sure they go in a group and stress that they stay together.
  • Welcome in. Advise them to only go to houses with porch lights on and walk on sidewalks on lit streets. 
  • Don’t play with fire. Steer clear from candles and other flames. 
  • Light it up. Equip your child with a flashlight with new batteries.
Finally, make sure trick-or-treaters will be safe when visiting your home as well. Remove anything that could cause kids to trip or fall on your walkway or lawn. Double check to see if the lights are on outside your house and light the walkway to your door, if possible.

Have a safe and fun Halloween!

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Any other tips you’d like to share? Add them to the comments section.

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