It's that time of year for tricks, treats, costumes and sweets. While Halloween is supposed to be a devilishly fun holiday, filled with parties, creepy decor and mountainous handfuls of candy bars, it's important to take precautions. From costumes to trick-or-treating, here are five common sense tips to keep your little ghouls and goblins safe on Halloween.
1. Dressing Up Every kid will tell you that it's the single most important part of Halloween. Whether you're buying an outfit or constructing an elaborate do-it-yourself costume, it needs to be sized accordingly. Kids' costumes need to be large enough for them to be comfortable, but not too big that they might trip or fall.
It will be wise to incorporate some type of reflective tape in the costume as an added safety feature. You want your child to be visible to drivers and other trick-or-treaters in case they’re still out by early evening. Good Halloween costumes can be creative and an outside-the-box original, as long as safety is taken into consideration.
2. Trick or Treating Chances are your kids are going to want to race all around the neighborhood from door-to-door, stockpiling as much candy as they possibly can. First, remind them to walk and not run, as nobody wants Halloween to end with a scraped knee, elbow or broken bone. Second, they're probably going to need to be reminded to use the crosswalks and look both ways when they cross the street.
Common sense has a tendency to go out the window when Halloween candy and chocolate is around. Encourage your children to go trick or treating in a large group. If your child is under 12, he or she should not go trick-or-treating without parental supervision. If you have a teenager in the house, then set a curfew.
3. Candy Inspection Once the kids have returned from trick-or-treating, be sure to carefully inspect all the candy. Look for items that might have been tampered with and discard anything that looks suspicious. Throw out choking hazards, and beware of sugar overload. Retain only the healthier edibles.
4. Decoration If you’re decorating your house (and your kids’ costumes), safety should be your number one priority. Watch out for materials that may easily catch fire, and be cautious when using candles to amp up the spookiness of your décor. Don’t leave any unattended, and place them in an area where kids can’t reach them.
Halloween is a time to dress up, have fun and gorge on candy. However, even a night of tricks and treats needs a set of safety precautions. If you follow these simple tips, your little ghouls and goblins will have a memorable and safe Halloween.