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Published on October 06, 2014

Happy Halloween How-To

10/06/14Halloween kids

Depending on your perspective, Halloween can be one of the most exciting nights of the year or one of the most stressful. Kids love Halloween, not only because of the free candy, but also because it means they get to stay outside long after dark. Conversely, the mere thought of your children wandering through the dark may make your skin crawl, and the reality of bags of candy entering your home are enough to make most parents fear upcoming dental appointments. So how can adults and kids find a happy (and safe!) Halloween middle ground? The American Academy of Pediatrics (www.aap.org) and Safe USA (www.cdc.gov/safeusa) offer the following tips:

  • Start planning early. A few weeks before the big night, start thinking about your children’s costumes and begin discussing Halloween safety. If you outline your expectations beforehand, you’ll be less likely to face power struggles.
  • Use hypoallergenic face paint instead of masks. Masks can hinder children’s vision.
  • Choose costumes that fit well. Oversized clothing, especially pants and shoes, can cause falls.
  • Add reflective tape to costumes. Also, make sure your child’s costume isn’t too cumbersome to allow him or her to carry a flashlight.
  • Celebrate as a family. Not only will this make the holiday more fun, it will make it safer, too. Whether you’re carving pumpkins, bobbing for apples, or trick-or-treating, parental supervision is key to protecting your children from harm.
  • Trick-or-treat in small groups accompanied by an adult. Plan on having one adult with every three or four children under age 12.
  • Establish a curfew for older children. You may want to give your child a cell phone so he or she can call and check in with you at certain times.
  • Wait until you’re home to dig in. Parents should inspect all treats before children eat them. Also, if your children are younger than 3, be sure to remove anything they could choke on, such as candies with peanuts, hard candies, and extra-chewy candies.

How Safe Is Your House?
After your kids are ready for Halloween, make sure your yard and house are safe as well with these tips from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (www.cpsc.gov).

  • Remove obstacles from lawns, steps, and porches when expecting trick-or-treaters.
  • Keep candles and lighted pumpkins away from landings and doorsteps where costumes could brush against the flame.
  • Indoors, keep candles and pumpkins away from curtains and decorations that could ignite.
  • Sweep leaves and other debris from sidewalks.
  • Make sure your outdoor lights are working.How Safe Is Your House?
    After your kids are ready for Halloween, make sure your yard and house are safe as well with these tips from the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (www.cpsc.gov).
  • Remove obstacles from lawns, steps, and porches when expecting trick-or-treaters.
  • Keep candles and lighted pumpkins away from landings and doorsteps where costumes could brush against the flame.
  • Indoors, keep candles and pumpkins away from curtains and decorations that could ignite.
  • Sweep leaves and other debris from sidewalks.
  • Make sure your outdoor lights are working.

Ready to get your family’s diet back on track after Halloween? Check out KishHealth System’s Healthy Eating classes!

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