Halloween is fun for kids of all ages, but we all need to practice extra vigilance to ensure the holiday is both safe and exciting. The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) has published a new list of safety tips for 2013. These include:
Cars are out in force, as are the kids, and navigating stairs and streets can be a bit complicated. Be sure to keep kids as safe as possible using the following tips:
- Plan costumes that are bright and reflective. Make sure that shoes fit well and that costumes are short enough to prevent tripping or entanglement.
- If the costume is not bright or reflective, add reflective tape or striping to costumes and trick-or-treat bags for greater visibility.
- Masks can limit or block eyesight, so consider non-toxic makeup and decorative hats as safer alternatives.
Walking the neighborhood isn’t the only place to practice safety. Keep these at-home tips in mind as well!
- Small children should never carve pumpkins. Children can draw a face or design with markers and then an adult can do the cutting.
- Consider using a flashlight or glow stick instead of a candle to light your pumpkin instead of a live candle. If you do use a candle, a votive candle is safest.
- Candlelit pumpkins should be placed on a sturdy surface, away from curtains, and should never be left unattended. Children should be told to not reach into the pumpkin for any reason.
Trick or Treating
- Your home: Remove anything a child could trip over (such as garden hoses, toys, bikes and lawn decorations) from the porch and front yard. Be sure to check outdoor lights and replace burned-out bulbs, and keep pets away from both the yard and the doorway.
- A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
- Only go to homes with a porch light on, and tell your children to never enter a house or car.