Halloween time can be one of the most exciting and fun times of year for children. Between decorating, making and eating treats, and of course dressing up and going tricking or treating, children look can’t wait to begin partaking in the festivities. Whether you’re trick-or-treating, or just passing out candy, families should be aware of important safety precautions revolving around the holiday.
Research shows that thirty-three percent of families talk to their children each year about Halloween safety despite that fact that seventy-five percent of families have concerns regarding Halloween safety. Below are tips to ensure everyone can enjoy the Halloween fun!
Preparing for the Fun
We understand children love to get hands on and help their parents. Be sure children are only given tasks that are age appropriate. For example, do not let small children carve their own pumpkins. Instead, allow your child to draw the stencil of the face for the adult to carve and allow them to decorate the pumpkin with markers or paint afterwards. The same can go for decorating the house or baking Halloween treats – your child can still help and have fun but in a safe manner. When it comes to lighting up those awesome pumpkins, instead of using a candle, use a flashlight or glow stick!
When it comes to going out and trick or treating, there are many precautions parents can take so their children can stay safe throughout the night. First and foremost, families should talk with their children regarding their expectation of the evening. Ensure your children understand the ground rules and what your family’s game plan would be in case of an emergency. Remind your children to use crosswalks when crossing the street and to stay on sidewalks or on the side of the road if there isn’t a sidewalk. Young children should always be accompanied by an adult. The adults can also hang on to any electronic devices, so that children are not distracting when traveling from house to house.
When it comes to picking out a costume, be sure your child’s costume is the right size and length to help prevent tripping and falling. Consider using non-toxic makeup instead of masks, which can slide down and obstruct a child’s vision. Families also should consider testing out makeup on a small area of skin ahead of time to make sure they do not have any unpleasant reactions. If your child’s costumes do not have any reflective material on them, decorate your child’s bag with reflective tape or stickers and have them walk around with glow sticks or flashlights to make drivers more aware of them.
Staying In or Passing Out Candy
Even if you aren’t taking children out, there are still safety precautions you should consider to keep those participating out of harm’s way. Research shows that the most popular trick-or-treating hours are between 5:30 p.m. and 9:30 p.m., so if you are out on the road, be sure to be aware of your surroundings and of children.
If you are passing out candy to trick-or-treaters, help keep them safe by removing anything from the yard and porches that children can trip on. This includes garden hoses, lawn decorations, toys and even wet leaves or snow. Be sure your porch and yard is also well lit, so visitors not only know your house is participating, but also so they can better see where they are going. When debating what to pass out, consider passing out inexpensive coloring books and crayons for children who may have food allergies.
What safety tips would you share with families?