Halloween is a holiday of fright and fun, a time for young and old to don costumes and enjoy the autumn night. Whether you are headed to out to trick or treat with your children, go to a haunted house, or attend an office party, it is important to keep safety in mind. Although Halloween is certainly a time for fun and a few scares, it is also a night in which accidents occur with greater frequency. Here are a few helpful tips for keeping your Halloween night festive and safe.
The most common health tip for children is to limit candy consumption. Though it is tempting for kids to devour their loot all in one night, it is also unhealthy. This behavior can have the immediate effect of a stomachache and can also contribute to childhood obesity. It is important to have children divide out their favorite treats, save some for later, and share others.
As a health-conscious distributor of treats during Halloween, you can always opt for healthier food options such as pretzels, granola bars, or low-calorie snack options, or you could even give out Halloween-themed items such as pencils or toys.
Have Fun, but Stay Safe
When trick or treating, there are several things to keep in mind to ensure safety. First, always travel in groups with a trusted adult chaperone. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, chaperones should put reflective tape on the costumes and bags of all members in the group and carry a flashlight. This will increase visibility at night since Halloween is consistently one of the most dangerous nights in terms of automobile accidents every year.
It is also important to be mindful of costume and prop safety during the holiday. Although many kids will want to wear what they please, it is of the utmost importance to make sure all masks are breathable. It is best to avoid the mask altogether and opt for makeup or face paint whenever possible.
Also be sure that children are dressed appropriately for the weather and that their costumes are not long enough to cause a tripping hazard. If a child’s costume incorporates props—whether a pirate sword, a witch or wizard wand, or even Thor’s mighty hammer—make sure they are made of flexible rubber or a light plastic. This will reduce the likelihood that they may injure themselves or others while playing in their outfits. Finally, be sure to maintain a safe distance from all candles and jack-o’-lanterns while walking on the sidewalks; although it is not common, some costumes are made of highly flammable materials that can pose a threat to the wearer.
For adults heading to parties instead, it is important to have a plan to get home. According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) nearly half (48%) of automobile accidents on Halloween night in 2012 involved a drunk driver. It is vital to have a designated driver or taxi ready if you are going to imbibe on Halloween night.
By following these health and safety tips, you can help ensure a safe and happy Halloween. So remember to never drink and drive, trick or treat in groups chaperoned by an adult, be mindful of your costume and props, and save some of that candy for later. Now take care and have a happy Halloween!
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2014, October 23). Halloween health and safety tips. CDC. Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/family/halloween/index.htm
Fields, T. (2014, December 31). Halloween one of the top 3 days for accidents. 10 News Tampa Bay Sarasota. Retrieved from http://www.wtsp.com/story/news/local/2014/10/31/halloween-on-of-the-top-three-days-for-injuries-or-deaths/18229959/
Lee, P. (2010, October 29). Halloween need not haunt childhood obesity epidemic. Huffington Post. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/penny-lee/halloween-need-not-haunt-_b_775907.html
Readers Digest Editors. (2015). 7 trick-or-treating safety tips. Readers Digest. Retrieved from http://www.rd.com/slideshows/7-trick-or-treating-safety-tips/view-all/