Halloween: Safe Spooking

Health Watch is a Public Service of the University News Bureau 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.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about keeping the bad scares out of Halloween. Trick-or-treating is one of the most popular Halloween traditions, but going out after dark in masks and costumes requires a few safety precautions.

Safe trick-or-treating starts with the costume. Dr. Paul Pepe, chairman of emergency medicine at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says costumes should fit properly and not be so long that they’ll drag on the ground. Makeup is safer than a mask because it doesn’t obscure vision. Costumes should be made of flame-retardant materials and should be bright or have reflectors for visibility. Trick-or-treaters should carry a flashlight or glow stick when going out after dark. It’s safest to go trick-or-treating in groups with at least one adult present, and the adult should have a cellphone in case of emergency. Children should avoid unlit areas and strangers’ homes, and they shouldn’t eat unwrapped candy.    


October 2011

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