Safety tips for trick-or-treating

With one of the spookiest holidays right around the corner, it’s time that we review how to stay safe on Halloween. Sure, the holiday is all about dressing up, running around the neighbourhood and eating lots of candy as a kid, but we also need to caution these children on how to best enjoy this day safely, whether at home, on the streets or at school.

When your child asks to dress up like their favourite character this Halloween, there are several things you should keep in mind before agreeing: is it bright enough? Does it interfere with their field of vision? Are they going to be able to cross the street safely? When it comes to a costume, you want it to be fun and safe for your child to enjoy the day of festivities. Here are some things to keep in mind:

  • Ensure the costume fits well to avoid tripping or any accidents caused by excess clothing. However, ensure there is also enough room for warm clothing to go underneath.
  • Check to see that all props and accessories are safe for your child to use. Ex. Flame-resistance, contact lenses, toy weapons, etc.
  • Consider using face paint, stickers or accessories rather than a mask. Masks can obstruct your child’s vision and make it difficult for other people to identify them.
  • Choose a brightly coloured costume to increase visibility or add reflective tape to the back of the costume so that they are easily seen on the dark streets.

When you send your child out trick-or-treating, it’s important that they understand how to safely navigate the neighbourhood. Remind them of these simple tips to have a fun night out with their friends:

  • Following the age-old rule and make sure your child is careful when crossing the street, looking both ways before crossing. This includes looking for cars, bikes, scooters and other pedestrians.
  • Tell your child to stay in well-lit areas so that they can always see what is going on around them. Send a flashlight with them in case they need to cross a dark area, like a field or alleyway.
  • If your child is old enough to trick-or-treat without supervision, send them out with other children their age so that they can look out for one another and have no trouble keeping up. If your child is too young to be unaccompanied, go trick-or-treating with a neighbouring family or another set of parents and children so that your child can still enjoy the experience with other kids.

Once your child returns home from trick-or-treating, it’s important that they understand not all candy can be considered safe until inspected by a parent. Here, you will want to watch for anything that has been previously opened, looks damaged or is homemade. There may also be items in the loot that are too small for your child to enjoy safely, whether as a choking hazard or a danger to younger children in your home. It’s important that you inspect your children’s candy before they dive in for the night.