This holiday is all about having fun. Here are 5 ways to keep it that way.

halloween kidsVampires, goblins and ghosts – oh my! We all enjoy a good scare on Halloween, but sometimes the scariest part of this holiday is the possibility of getting injured while trying to have fun. Tripping over costumes, allergic reactions and pumpkin-carving injuries are just some of the hazards to watch for.

Don't let health hazards ruin this freakishly fun holiday. Keep your kids (and you!) safer by following these Halloween safety tips:

Curb the Carving

More people get hurt carving pumpkins each year than they do participating in any other Halloween activity. Instead of grabbing the biggest knife in your kitchen, use small pumpkin carving tools that come in kits to minimize injuries. If you have little ones, skip the knives altogether and use paint or foam accessory kits to decorate pumpkins.

Stay Visible

It's important for your little goblins and ghouls to be seen by motorists when trick-or-treating. To keep kids safer, add reflective tape to costumes and have everyone carry flashlights or glow sticks so they're more visible to passing cars. Make sure kids know they need to walk together as a group, stay on the sidewalk and not run across the street. Never let children bike or skateboard while trick-or-treating. It's harder to navigate roads at night, especially while wearing a costume.

Be Fanatic about Food

As many as one in 13 children in the United States has a food allergy. Some of the most common allergies are to milk, eggs, peanuts, soy and wheat, which are often found in Halloween candy.  If your children have food allergies, remind them how important it is to not eat anything until you're able to sort through the candy. Bring or send along some of their favorite allergy-friendly treats so they have something to snack on while walking around. Look for houses with a teal pumpkin hanging outside. These homes belong to the Teal Pumpkin Project, which means they hand out non-food trinkets and treats that are safe for all trick-or-treaters.

Avoid Fire Hazards

Although Halloween costumes sold in the U.S. must be made of flame-resistant materials, all it takes is a long costume cape or a discarded mask getting too close to a burning candle or blazing jack o' lantern to cause a fire. Keep an eye out for open flames as you walk through your neighborhood and steer clear of them. If you're making your own costume, use flame-resistant fabrics like nylon or polyester and avoid cotton, which is highly flammable.

Don't Get Tripped Up

Dressing up for Halloween is fun, but many costumes are tripping hazards. Mermaid fins, spider legs and rubber zombie masks may be visually captivating, but they make it hard to walk and see properly. Make sure to tie up any loose ends on costumes before heading out the door. Instead of masks, consider using face paint so your child can see better.

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Date Last Reviewed: August 15, 2023

Editorial Review: Andrea Cohen, Editorial Director, Baldwin Publishing, Inc. Contact Editor

Medical Review: Perry Pitkow, MD

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