Thursday, October 1, 2009

Prepare for a Safe and Fun Halloween for your Preschooler

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays, and times have certainly changed since my own kids donned pumpkins and Power Ranger costumes. Though parents need to be more careful today than previous generations, those precautions don’t need to ruin the holiday.

Though many families, blocks, and communities host parties, other families still enjoy trick-or-treating the old fashioned way. Just use common sense. Here are some recommendations by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

Costumes: Swords, knives, and similar costume accessories should be short, soft, and flexible. Fasten reflective tape to costumes and bags to help drivers see you and your children. Always test make-up in a small area first. Remove it before bedtime to prevent skin and eye irritation. Lower your risk for serious eye injury by not wearing decorative contact lenses. Wear well-fitting masks, costumes, and shoes to avoid blocked vision, trips, and falls.

Venturing out: Avoid trick-or-treating alone. Walk in groups and be sure kids are always with a trusted adult. Hold a flashlight while trick-or-treating to help you see and others see you. Look both ways before crossing the street. Use established crosswalks wherever possible. Only walk on sidewalks or on the far edge of the road facing traffic to stay safe. Enter homes only if you're with a trusted adult. Otherwise, stay outside. Never walk near lit candles or luminaries. Be sure to wear flame-resistant costumes.

Check your treats: Examine all treats for choking hazards and tampering before eating them. Limit the amount of treats you eat. Eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid eating homemade treats unless you know the cook well.

I hope you enjoy a safe and enjoyable Halloween this year!

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