It’s spooky season, which means jack o’lanterns, pumpkins, and candy for the whole family! There are many special memories to be made on Halloween, so before talking about safety tips, one of our biggest pieces of advice to caregivers is to have fun.
Wear the silly costume, carve an imperfect jack o’lantern, and maybe let them stay up 15-30 minutes past their normal bedtime!
Research shows that Positive Childhood Experiences reduce the impact of toxic stress and Adverse Childhood Experiences, so any chance that caregivers have to let loose and make kids laugh and feel connected and safe is important to embrace.
There are also some serious precautions that are important to consider during these fun festivities!
The National Safety Council gives guidance in three categories to consider this Halloween:
- Double check that all costumes, wigs, and accessories are fire-resistant
- Children who are allowed out after dark should fasten reflective tape stylishly added to their costumes and bags, or give them glow sticks
- If possible for the costume, choose nontoxic Halloween makeup instead of masks, which can obscure vision
- Make sure children remove all makeup before going to bed to prevent irritation
- All young children making the rounds should be accompanied by a responsible adult
- Older children who are going alone should review their plan and route with a parent
- While it may not be the typical time, children should still have a curfew
- Teach children never to enter a stranger’s home or car
- Make sure any unaccompanied minors only travel in familiar, well-lit areas and stay with friends
- Tell your children not to eat any treats until they return home, and take care to avoid any food allergies
Adults also have their own role to play to ensure safe communities on Halloween:
- Drivers should watch for children walking on roadways, medians and curbs
- Show caution when entering and exiting driveways and alleys
- Some children will be dressed in darker clothing, so be extra cautious for harder-to-see pedestrians
Stay safe and enjoy your family – from all of us at ASPCC!