Oct. 21, 2022

Halloween is an exciting time for children and adults alike. Many Oswego County families will be participating in trick-or-treating, Halloween parties and other festive activities. As residents prepare for their fun events, the Oswego County Health Department wants to remind parents of how to keep safety a top priority this Halloween.

Health staff suggest following these FDA tips to ensure treats are enjoyed safely:

  • Instruct children not to eat or accept any unwrapped candy. Parents should inspect wrapped candy for signs of tampering, including tears or holes in wrappers, discoloration and unusual appearance. If the safety of any treat is in question, it is best to throw it away.
  • Don’t let children eat any of their candy until it has been checked by an adult. Provide children with a snack or light meal before leaving for trick-or-treating and encourage them to wait until they’re home to eat anything.
  • For children with food allergies, always check the label to make sure the item is safe for consumption. Do not accept any homemade items, as there is no way to be sure of the ingredients.
  • For those with very young children, locate and remove any choking hazards, such as hard candies, gum, peanuts and small toys.
  • If hosting a party at home, prevent risk of bacteria by serving pasteurized products and keeping all perishable food items refrigerated until serving time. Perishable food will be more vulnerable to bacteria if left out for longer than two hours.

There are also cautions to consider when it comes to costumes, such as visibility and safety risks. It is recommended that children wear costumes that are brightly colored or reflective to ensure visibility. Reflective tape can be added to costumes to make them more easily seen. Costumes should be flame resistant and at a length that prevents the risk of tripping. Hats and makeup can serve as alternatives to face masks that can obstruct a child’s vision.

If wearing novelty makeup, test items in advance to make sure there are no allergic reactions. Signs of skin irritation such as a rash, redness or swelling are possible indicators of an allergy.

Vibrant makeup is popular for Halloween, and it is especially important to ensure safety when it comes to makeup around the eye. Parents can check the FDA’s list of color additives to make sure colors are FDA approved at www.fda.gov/cosmetics/cosmetic-ingredient-names/color-additives-permitted-use-cosmetics.

When it comes to decorative contact lenses, users should visit an eye care professional before use. Decorative contact lenses can cause eye injury and should not be used without a proper fitting and instructions from a professional.

For more information on staying safe this Halloween, contact the Oswego County Health Department at 315-349-3547.

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