Halloween is one of the most beloved holidays for kids of all ages. Tons of excitement is built around the idea of dressing up as your favorite movie character and receiving boatloads of candy just by chanting the words “trick-or-treat”.
While it’s important to let your children enjoy themselves and have a great time trick-or-treating with their friends, managing their excitement and keeping them safe is a top priority. In fact, a recent Halloween safety study showed that only one-third of parents talk to their kids annually about Halloween, although three-fourths report having Halloween safety fears.
With Halloween festivities coming up in just a couple of days, here are four helpful tips to keep your kids safe and aware while still enjoying the friendly spook:
Choose Costumes Carefully
If you still need to shop for costumes, try to avoid ones that require big, heavy masks which could possibly limit or block a child’s view. Choose a costume that fits well and doesn’t drag on the floor so there’s no chance of tripping or falling. If possible, try getting a light-colored costume to be more visible when crossing the street at night. Otherwise, put a few strips of reflective tape on your costume and carry flashlights so you have no trouble seeing and being seen.
Share the Duties of Pumpkin Carving
According to American Academy of Pediatrics , small children should never be given permission to carve a pumpkin, even if being watched by an adult. There is too big of a risk involved with letting children hold sharp objects and can lead to serious injury. Instead, kids should use markers to draw the face of a pumpkin, and then let the parents do the cutting.
Trick-or-treating groups should be led by an adult at all times. If kids are old enough to walk around without parents, travel in large groups and don’t stay out past the curfew. Education.com suggests that trick-or-treaters plan their routes in advance with their parents and stay in well-lit, heavily populated neighborhoods. NEVER enter a home or car to receive candy, no matter how friendly the person is. Avoid dark houses with long driveways far from the main road. Cross the street at corners, using crosswalks and traffic signals whenever they’re present.
After returning home from a successful night of collecting candy, take time to inspect all goodies before your kids start feasting. Check for tampering of wrappers, open packaging, or small puncture holes that look unusual. Play it extra safe by getting rid of any homemade treats. Ration out how many pieces you’ll allow your kids to have each day, and set a date for when old candy will be thrown out.
We hope you find these tips to be helpful as you prepare for a fun Halloween filled with yummy treats and joy. And of course, don’t forget to remind your kids to use their manners with a friendly “trick-or-treat!” followed by a polite “thank you”. Have fun out there, stay safe, and watch out for that sweet tooth!