Halloween is a scary time of year, but we all can make sure that children have a safe holiday with the following tips from the American Academy of Pediatrics.
All Dressed Up...
- Because they can obstruct a child's vision, masks are not recommended. If a child wears makeup, parents should look for non-toxic, hypoallergenic kits.
- Costumes should be flame-retardant and fit properly. Avoid oversized shoes, high heels, and long skirts or pants that could cause a child to fall.
- Children who will be trick-or-treating after dusk should have reflective tape on their costumes and carry flashlights.
Carving a Niche...
- Small children should never carve pumpkins. Children can draw a face with markers, then parents can do the cutting. Under parents' supervision, children ages 5 to 10 can carve with pumpkin cutters equipped with safety bars.
- Votive candles are safest for candlelit pumpkins.
- Lighted pumpkins should be placed on a sturdy table, away from curtains and other flammable objects and should never be left unattended.
- Children shouldn't snack while they're trick-or-treating. Parents should check treats at home.
- Watch for signs of tampering, such as small pinholes in wrappers and torn or loose packages.
- Parents of young children should get rid of choking hazards such as gum, peanuts, hard candies or small toys.
Home Safe Home...
- To keep their home safe for visiting trick-or-treaters, parents should remove anything a child could trip over such as garden hoses, toys, bikes, and lawn decorations.
- Parents should check outdoor lights and replace burned-out bulbs.
- Wet leaves should be swept from sidewalks and steps.
- Remember that Halloween is for children of all ages... so get involved with your little ghost or goblin!
Have a safe and happy Halloween!