SACRAMENTO - California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Director and State Public Health Officer Dr. Karen Smith is reminding everyone that simple steps can help everyone stay safe during Halloween.
“Halloween is the spookiest time of the year for California’s trick-or-treaters, but it doesn’t have to be scary when it comes to health and safety,” said Dr. Smith. “There are simple things that parents and their children can do to stay safe during their holiday activities.”
Costumes should be labeled flame resistant and be the right size so they don’t create a trip hazard. Since masks can sometimes make it hard to see, consider using non-toxic face paint and makeup. Decorative contact lenses should not be worn unless an eye care professional has been consulted. Parents should decorate costumes and bags with reflective tape or stickers, and have trick-or-treaters use glow sticks or flashlights to help them see and be seen by drivers.
Trick-or-treaters should walk in groups and with a trusted adult, and use crosswalks and sidewalks whenever possible. Walk – do not run – from house to house. Only trick-or-treat at well-lit homes, added Dr. Smith.
“Halloween wouldn’t be Halloween without the candy,” said Dr. Smith. “Children should not eat candy from their treat bags while they’re out trick-or-treating. Give your trick-or-treater a light meal or snack before they go out, so they don’t go out on an empty stomach. Encourage them to wait until they get home before eating candy so that you can make sure it’s properly wrapped and doesn’t have anything that can cause an allergic reaction.”
Dr. Smith reminds motorists that they also need to be careful around Halloween. They should slow down and be especially alert in residential neighborhoods. Children are excited on Halloween and may move in unpredictable ways. “Turning on your headlights earlier in the day can help you see pedestrians sooner,” Dr. Smith says.
The day after Halloween marks the end of Daylight Saving Time, which is a good time to check the batteries in your home’s smoke detectors.
Additional Halloween safety tips can be found on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website.