Don’t Get Lost on Halloween!

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I love Halloween.  Most of it, anyway.  I can live without the super creepy, fake bloody dead people decorations that some people really seem to love, but I love the rest of it.  I love the cheery look of pumpkins on the front porch, the adorable costumes, the cute voices yelling “trick or treat!” from behind the door, and the smiles that this exciting night brings to little faces everywhere.  Also?  I love Candy Corn.  Due to food allergies we are a dye free, nut free, soy free, rice free (not to mention countless other things free) house…so I had to break up with Candy Corns.  I won’t give up the search, though.  Somewhere out there someone is making dye-soy-rice syrup-tree nut free Candy Corns…and I can’t wait to find them.  I f you have any tips, please send them along.

Anyway, I love Halloween.

But…Halloween is the most dangerous night of the year for young children.  Between walking around in the dark, large crowds of kids wearing costumes, and drivers who can’t quite see all of the kids darting back and forth, Halloween night requires increased supervision.

It’s incredibly easy for a young child to get lost.  Kids panic quickly when they lose sight of their parents.  While some kids might yell out for help if they get lost or confused, others might hide or keep moving.  With all of the chaos that occurs on Halloween, a child can get turned around and run off in the wrong direction.

It’s best to have a plan.

Identify a safe house:

Identify a safe house before you head out trick-or-treating.  This should be the home of a trusted friend or neighbor.  Walk by it during the day and point it out that night (houses look different in the dark) so that your child knows where to go in case he gets separated from the group.

SmartPhone Pictures:

It might sound excessive, I mean who wants to live in a state of worry, but the more prepared you are, the better your chance of enlisting help quickly if you lose sight of your little one on Halloween.

Snap two pictures of your child before you head out the door:  One with his costume on and one without.  Should you happen to lose sight of your child for a moment, you can quickly access pictures of him from that very night.

Find a friendly face:

Many kids hear about stranger danger, and for good reason.  But it’s also important to teach your child to find a friendly face in an emergency.  Police officers and fire fighters tend to be out an about on nights like Halloween, but kids should also learn to look for moms with babies or young children to ask for help.  Writing your phone number in marker on your child’s arm is also a good idea.  Many kids become quiet and shut down when they are scared.  Having your phone number on them helps another adult find you quickly.

Or…

Get some “Uh Oh Safety Wristbands”:

Uh Oh Bands is a family owned company committed to keeping kids safe.  As parents, and as people who genuinely care about kids, the creators of Uh Oh Bands took a simple idea and ran with it.  With a lightweight wristband that says “uh oh, I’m lost” and allows space to write in a phone number, kids can easily get help in the event that they lose their parents.

Note:  Never write your child’s first or last name on a wristband or anything else, for that matter.  Simply write “Mom” followed by your phone number.

Uh Oh Bands are waterproof and allergen free (I always like to hear that) and perfect for little arms.  And the best part?  They even have glow-in-the-dark wristbands for Halloween!

Uh Oh Bands also has a line of allergy alert bands, which are great for play dates, sleepovers, and daycare/school.

You can learn more about Uh Oh Bands on Facebook.

You can never be too safe when it comes to looking out for your little ones, and I highly recommend that you check these out.  Moms have some very excellent ideas…

I hope you and your little ones have a wonderful Halloween!

 

Disclaimer:  Uh Oh Bands sent me a pack of safety and allergy alert wristbands for review.  I am a big believer in keeping kids safe, and I think these wristbands are an excellent product for travel, allergies, and Halloween (or other busy places such as fairs/large outdoor events).  I was not compensated for this post.

 

 

 

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About Katie

Katie Hurley is a Child, Adolescent, and Family Psychotherapist and Parenting Expert in Los Angeles, CA. She works in private practice in the South Bay area of Los Angeles, writes for PBS Parents, Washington Post Parents, and the Huffington Post. She is the author of "The Happy Kid Handbook: How to Raise Joyful Children in a Stressful World" (Tarcher/Penguin, 2015) and the forthcoming "No More Mean Girls: The Secret to Raising Strong, Confident, and Compassionate Girls" (Penguin Random House, 2018)