“Trick or Treat” – Keeping Kids Safe this Halloween
PHOENIX, Ariz. (October 26, 2011) - Halloween is an exciting time of year for children of all ages. To help ensure a safe holiday, Phoenix Children’s Hospital has compiled detailed tips and advice from the American Academy of Pediatrics.
David Bank, MD, MBA, Director of the Emergency Department, Phoenix Children’s Hospital, explains that “It is very common around Halloween time when we start to see kids tripping and falling from costumes or masks - which leads to cuts on the forehead, twisting of ankles, and injuries to the back of the head.”
For families with children under age 6, any small toys, gumballs, and sucking candy should be immediately thrown out. Parents should inspect all packaging to make sure it has not been tampered with. Dr. Bank also suggests that parents feed children a small meal before trick or treating so children aren’t snacking on candy all night.
All Dressed Up:
- Plan costumes that are bright and reflective. Make sure that shoes fit well and that costumes are short enough to prevent tripping, entanglement or contact with flame.
- Consider adding reflective tape or striping to costumes and trick-or-treat bags for greater visibility.
- Because masks can limit or block eyesight, consider non-toxic makeup and decorative hats as safer alternatives. Hats should fit properly to prevent them from sliding over eyes.
- Obtain flashlights with fresh batteries for all children and their escorts.
- Teach children how to call 9-1-1 (or their local emergency number) if they have an emergency or become lost.
Home Safe Home:
- To keep homes safe for visiting trick-or-treaters, parents should remove from the porch and front yard anything a child could trip over such as garden hoses, toys, bikes and lawn decorations.
- Parents should check outdoor lights and replace burned-out bulbs.
- Restrain pets so they do not inadvertently jump on or bite a trick-or-treater.
On The Trick-or-Treat Trail:
- A parent or responsible adult should always accompany young children on their neighborhood rounds.
- Stay in a group and communicate where they will be going.
- Remain on well-lit streets and always use the sidewalk.
- If no sidewalk is available, walk at the far edge of the roadway facing traffic.
- Never cut across yards or use alleys.
- Don't assume the right of way. Motorists may have trouble seeing trick-or-treaters. Just because one car stops, doesn't mean others will.
- Law enforcement authorities should be notified immediately of any suspicious or unlawful activity.
© 9/08 American Academy of Pediatrics
About Phoenix Children’s Hospital
Phoenix Children’s Hospital, ranked in U.S. News & World Report’s Best Children’s Hospitals, is Arizona’s only licensed children’s hospital, providing world-class care in more than 40 pediatric specialties to children from throughout the state and region. Phoenix Children’s is in the midst of a major expansion to meet the needs of the Southwest’s rapid population growth. The signature element of the expansion is a new 11-story, 750,000-square-foot tower which will enable the hospital to grow from 345 licensed beds today to a total of 626 licensed beds once the project is complete. The hospital’s expansion also includes an aggressive physician recruitment effort and new satellite centers in high growth areas of the Valley.