“Each year many kids look forward to the fun that Halloween brings, but with the fun also comes potential hazards that parents and caregivers need to be aware of,” said Dr. Ash Singhal, a pediatric neurosurgeon and the medical director of BC Children’s Hospital trauma program. “BC Children’s Hospital encourages families to talk to their children—from little ones to teens—about safety and to also lead by example.”
See hazards: While many kids love wearing masks and costumes with intricate accessories, these items can actually become barriers when spotting cars and other hazards. Consider skipping the mask and using face paint so that kids can see clearly. If your little princess is wearing a long gown, ensure it is short enough to avoid falls, and that your superhero’s cape doesn’t drape on the ground.
Stick together: Are your little ones trick-or-treating? Make sure they are accompanied by an adult at all times. Consider group-themed costumes to encourage kids to stick together, such as The Avengers, Paw Patrol or PJ Masks. If you’re walking at night, hold young ones' hands and keep them safe from obstacles like uneven surfaces or stairs.
Stay bright: The brighter and more colourful the costume, the better. Consider attaching reflective tape, buttons and lights to kids’ coats and goody bags; by doing this, you make it easier for drivers to see kids crossing the street. Always carry a charged flashlight with extra batteries while trick-or-treating. Decorating your property? Keep it well-lit and use non-flammable light sources.
Follow the yellow-brick road: Draw a trick-or-treat map with your kids and ensure everyone sticks to the route; let someone at home know the route you plan to take. Discuss a plan with older children so you know where they are at all times. Make sure they have a charged mobile and tell them to make like ET and phone home if there are any changes to agreed-upon plans.
Check candy: Check all treats before little hands start unwrapping candy. Be wary of unsealed or broken wrappers and unwrapped candies, and review all home-packaged candy. When in doubt, throw it out.
Drivers, slow down: More children will be on the streets and sidewalks on Halloween night—many of them distracted by the night’s festivities . Please slow down, drive safely and do not drink and drive.
BC Children’s Hospital, part of the Provincial Health Services Authority, provides expert care for the province’s most seriously ill or injured children, youth and young adults, including newborns. Child and Youth Mental Health provides a diverse range of specialized and one-of-a-kind tertiary mental health and substance use services for children, adolescents and young adults across the province. For more information, visit www.bcchildrens.ca or follow us on Twitter @BCChildrensHosp. The Provincial Health Services Authority (PHSA) plans, manages and evaluates selected specialty and province-wide health care services across BC, working with the five geographic health authorities to deliver province-wide solutions that improve the health of British Columbians. For more information, visit www.phsa.ca/ of follow on Twitter @PHSAofBC.
Provincial Health Services Authority
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