A Safe, Healthy and Fun Halloween

Autumn events like Halloween and Harvest Day are fun times for people to dress up, go to parties and go trickor-treating for yummy treats. These evets are also a great opportunity for you to practice and teach your children many health and safety tips.

Dressing Up: Many adults like to dress up as much as kids do! Costumes are a fun way to express your personal taste and to take a break from the “real world” for a short time. Make sure that your costume experience is enjoyable by keeping the following in mind when choosing and putting together your Halloween ensemble.

  • If you are wearing face make-up, test a small area first to make sure you do not have a reaction. Remove it before going to bed to avoid skin and eye irritation.
  • Decorative contact lenses can be fun, but can also cause eye injury or irritation; use them with caution.
  • Costume accessories, like swords and knives, should be short, soft and flexible to avoid injury.
  • Well-fitting costumes, masks and shoes will help you avoid trips and falls.
  • Dress for the weather. Late October nights are often quite cold in our area. Be sure that costumes have long sleeves and pants and will help keep you and your children warm if the evening is chilly.

Trick-ot-Treating: Children look forward to Halloween and trick-or-treating with  a lot of excitement and anticipation. You can help your children have an enjoyable and memorable experience by taking the time to make sure that you all practice safe habits.

Most trick-or-treating happens on foot in residential areas. Make sure that your children are visible to passing motorists. Walk on sidewalks and face oncoming traffic whenever possible. Look both ways before crossing streets, anduse crosswalks whenever they are available. Wear light-colored cosutmes or fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags. Using a flashlight will not only allow you to better see where you are going, but will also help motorists and other pedestrians to see you.

Being visible is not the only way to keep safe while trick-or-treating. These tips are also good to get into the habit of following each Halloween:

  • Avoid trick-or-treating along – go in a group and make sure that all young children are accompanied by an adult.
  • Children should only enter homes if they are with a trusted adult.
  • Look over treats for choking hazards and evidence of tampering.
  • Avoid homemade treats, unless they are made by someone you know and trust.

Healthy Holiday Habits: Holidays are sometimes blamed for weight gain and inactivity, but Halloween and Harvest Day parties can be a healthy experience! Limit the amount of sweets you eat by storing extra or leftover candy in a cupboard or the freezer. At parties, choose healthier refreshments like veggies, fruits and cheeses. If you are throwing a party, make sure to have these tasty and healthy choices on hand for your guests! Finally, remember that party games and waling door to door while trick-or-treating are both good, fun ways to get some extra exercise.

You may celebrate the autumn holidays by dressing up, hosting or attending parties or taking children trick-or-treating, but no matter what you do, you can take part in the fun while keeping a safe and healthy lifestyle! Visit www.cdc.gov/family/halloween for more information.