How can my child stay safe at Halloween?
Anne Bordal is a certified child life specialist at Banner Thunderbird Medical Center.
Question: What are some things I can do to help my kids stay safe on Halloween?
Answer: Halloween is an exciting time for children and their families but celebrating the holiday can often present health and safety risks. With easy-to-remember tips you can ensure that Halloween is safe and healthy for your children.
Assist children in choosing a fun or spooky costume that is easy and safe to move in. Costume's should not inhibit your child's vision or hearing and, if store-bought, should be labeled "flame-retardant."
Supply children with flashlights or glow-sticks to light their way around the neighborhood. Make sure they obey all traffic laws and only cross the street at crosswalks or corners.
Trick-or-treat in neighborhoods you are familiar with, only visiting houses that are well lit and provide a safe walkway. Plan a route prior to leaving your house and make a plan in case someone gets separated from the group. Take a cell phone or provide your teen with a cell phone for the evening.
Although Halloween day can often be chaotic provide your little ghosts and goblins with a nutritious meal before heading out to collect candy. When the trick-or-treating is done have an adult inspect all candy before allowing children to dig in. Make sure each piece is in a sealed wrapper. With younger children, remove hard candy and gum to avoid the possibility of choking.
With consideration for the all the possible germs out there, the importance of hand-washing prior to putting that first piece of candy from hand into mouth, cannot be stressed enough.
At the end of the evening, help your child store his or her candy somewhere other than their room.