Health Watch — Halloween: Planning

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications  and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

Halloween is nearly upon us, and that means it’s time for fall festivals, trick-or-treating and costume parties. This week on Health Watch, we’ll talk about how you can enjoy this time of year in a safe and healthy way. When you plan for Halloween, it’s important to keep safety in mind, and that starts with the costume.

Dr. Paul Pepe, chairman of emergency medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says costumes should fit properly. If they’re too long, a child may trip and fall. Consider using makeup instead of a mask because a mask can obscure vision. Make trick-or-treating plans with friends so that children can go in groups with an adult chaperone. Kids should have reflective material on their costumes and carry a flashlight or glow stick so they can be seen in the dark, and adult chaperones should have a cell phone. Plan the trick-or-treating route to visit only homes where you know the residents. Avoid unfamiliar or poorly lit areas, and beware of unfamiliar pets.

Visit http://www.utsouthwestern.org/emergency to learn more about UT Southwestern’s clinical services in emergency care.

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October 2008

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