Halloween is almost here, an exciting night for all the little ghosts, princesses, superheroes, and other trick-or-treaters out ringing doorbells around the neighborhood. To keep this Halloween’s trick-or-treating safe and fun, the Center for Vision Loss shares some tips on costume safety.
1. Costumes should be brightly colored. Make sure they are clearly visible at night. Add reflective tape to ankles or across shoulders for extra visibility. Carrying flashlights or glow sticks can be fun.
2. Costumes shouldn’t restrict movement or vision. Clothing that dangles to the ground, or accessories that could cause your child to trip or fall, can be dangerous. If your child wears a mask, make sure the eye holes are large enough and properly spaced so he or she can see clearly.
3. Do not wear “scary” contact lenses. These lenses are not made with medical grade materials and are not properly sized for everyone’s eyes. Using them can cause permanent damage and or vision loss.
4. Make sure costumes are labeled “flame retardant.” Use flame-retardant costume wigs and trick-or-treat bags, too.
5. Use face paint instead of masks. Small children have difficulty seeing through the eye holes of a mask that is too big. Consider using face paint instead. Apply it to a small area of your child’s wrist several days before Halloween to make sure there isn’t a skin reaction.
6. “Weapon” accessories should be made of flexible material or avoided completely. Swords, guns, lasers and similar accessories need to be rubber or other flexible material to avoid injury if there’s a fall. Never use real laser pointers as these can damage vision.
Additional tips are available from the American Academy of Ophthalmology.