Navigate Up

UPMC/University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Media Coordinator
Telephone: 412-692-6254
Director
Telephone: 412-877-1656

Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC Offers Tips for Parents to Avoid a Real Scare With Their Little Vampires and Witches this Halloween

PITTSBURGH, Oct. 25, 2011 – Halloween can be a fun-filled evening for the entire family, but the holiday also can be one of the most dangerous nights of the year for young pedestrians. Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC is offering tips for families to make sure all trick-or-treaters gather their goodies safely.   

Cars may pose the greatest danger during Halloween. Children’s Hospital urges drivers to be on heightened alert the weekend before Halloween and the night of, because kids will be out, excited for the fun, and less likely to pay attention to traffic. Parents need to supervise young children during their trick-or-treating rounds, stay in familiar neighborhoods, and use safe pedestrian behaviors themselves as a good example to children.

“Excitement grows for kids when they get to dress up in costumes and go trick-or-treating,” said Barbara Gaines, M.D., director of the Benedum Pediatric Trauma Program at Children’s Hospital. “It is important for parents to make sure their children are safe pedestrians during trick-or-treating. To help keep them protected and out of the emergency room, parents should tell their children to stick to sidewalks and cross walks to avoid any potential dangers and to walk with a flashlight."

In addition to pedestrian safety on Halloween, parents and kids also should be careful when choosing a costume. Parents should help their children choose a costume that is well-fitted and does not drag on the ground to avoid trips and falls. Kids also should trade in masks that can obstruct their vision and breathing for non-toxic face paint. Purchase costumes that are brightly colored or trim dark costumes with reflective tape so children are more visible to drivers.

Children’s also offers some additional tips for parents to keep their kids safe during Halloween:

  • Instruct children not to eat any treats until they get home and have them checked by an adult. Make sure the candy is not homemade and also throw out unwrapped treats or anything that looks like it may have been opened or tampered with. Serve children dinner beforehand so they won’t be hungry.
  • Trick-or-treat in familiar neighborhoods at homes of people you know. Don’t go to unknown neighborhoods or travel too far from home.
  • Preschool-age children and toddlers can be afraid of the scarier aspects of Halloween. Talk to younger children in advance about the difference between reality and make-believe.
  • Respect the designated trick-or-treating times in your neighborhood area – whether it be during the weekend or on Monday night, Oct. 31.

For more information and safety tips for the Halloween holiday, please visit www.chp.edu/besafe.

©  UPMC | Affiliated with the University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences
Supplemental content provided by A.D.A.M. Health Solutions. All rights reserved.

For help in finding a doctor or health service that suits your needs, call the UPMC Referral Service at 412-647-UPMC (8762) or 1-800-533-UPMC (8762). Select option 1.

UPMC is an equal opportunity employer. UPMC policy prohibits discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, ancestry, national origin, age, sex, genetics, sexual orientation, marital status, familial status, disability, veteran status, or any other legally protected group status. Further, UPMC will continue to support and promote equal employment opportunity, human dignity, and racial, ethnic, and cultural diversity. This policy applies to admissions, employment, and access to and treatment in UPMC programs and activities. This commitment is made by UPMC in accordance with federal, state, and/or local laws and regulations.

Medical information made available on UPMC.com is not intended to be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. You should not rely entirely on this information for your health care needs. Ask your own doctor or health care provider any specific medical questions that you have. Further, UPMC.com is not a tool to be used in the case of an emergency. If an emergency arises, you should seek appropriate emergency medical services.

For UPMC Mercy Patients: As a Catholic hospital, UPMC Mercy abides by the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services, as determined by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. As such, UPMC Mercy neither endorses nor provides medical practices and/or procedures that contradict the moral teachings of the Roman Catholic Church.

© UPMC
Pittsburgh, PA, USA UPMC.com