with M. Rachel McGuffy, MD
Lexington Clinic Pediatrician


Children love Halloween! They love getting dressed up and going out to collect "treats.”  The following are tips to help your child have a safe holiday:
  • Make sure your child’s costume is bright and reflective.  For dark costumes, attach something bright to help cars and people see your child.  Make sure the costume is not too long to avoid tripping.
  • Make sure masks properly fit and that your child can see all directions from it.  If not, use make-up instead of the mask.
  • Make sure all accessories are flame retardant.
  • Make sure your child has a working flashlight to use for darker areas or when crossing the street.
  • Always accompany younger children.
  • Only go to homes with porch lights on and never enter the home to obtain treats.
  • Carry a cell phone in case of emergency.
  • Remain on streets with sidewalks and that are well-lit.
For parents staying at home to hand out treats the following tips will help:
  • Make sure your porch is unobstructed-remove any items that might be tripped over.
  • Make sure all leaves are swept  from your walks and sidewalks.
  • Make sure all your outdoor lights are working properly.
  • Restrain your pets so that they will not jump on or bite the trick-or-treaters.
Once your child arrives home with their treat bag, make sure that a parent goes through the candy to remove any opened, spoiled, or suspicious candy.  Children do not need large amounts of sugar, so be sure to ration the candy.  For children receiving excessive amounts of candy, help them chose which candy they would like to keep and you may giveaway the rest.

For those of you who live in areas that are not conducive to trick-or-treating, check around for other Halloween activities. Many churches and malls have organized trick-or-treating activities.  Many libraries and neighborhoods have Halloween parties where they can wear their costumes and play with other children. These parties are a good option for younger children who are not ready to partake of treats yet.

Have a safe and Happy Halloween!
Dr. M. Rachel McGuffey is board-certified in Pediatrics. She provides primary care for children, childhood immunizations, well-child physicals, and school and sports physicals. Dr. McGuffey's professional interest is general pediatrics.