Halloween is one of the most fun holidays of the year for kids, as it provides them with the chance to dress up, go trick-or-treating, and attend Halloween parties. However, before it can be fun, it’s got to be safe!
As you are helping your children select their costumes for this year’s festivities, it is essential to pay attention to your children’s eye safety, as certain features of costumes and other activities surrounding Halloween can pose a higher risk of eye injuries. Below are a few tips to help you out as you and your children prepare for a night of fun!
- Avoid decorative, non-prescription contact lenses – Although it is against the law to sell contact lenses in unlicensed stores, such as costume shops, party supply outlets, and beauty stores, the popularity of decorative contact lenses, especially among teenagers, has meant that they are not difficult to find, according to Children’s Hospital Los Angeles (CHLA). Since many of these contact lenses are produced by unlicensed manufacturers, there is a high possibility that they are made from inferior quality plastic or contain toxic dyes. There is also the added danger that children using contact lenses will not follow proper hygiene instructions when inserting or removing the lenses, which can lead to corneal abrasions, conjunctivitis, or even corneal ulcers that cause permanent blindness. If decorative contact lenses are absolutely necessary for your child’s costume, you should have them fitted by an ophthalmologist and purchase them from a licensed care professional.
- Take extra measures to prevent an eye injury – Rush Medical Center advises that you do not allow sharp objects, such as fake knives and swords, to be included your child’s costume, nor other features that could poke someone’s eye, like feathers or decorations made from wire.
- Ensure your child is able to see well – This recommendation from Optometry Services at Ohio State University is a must! Create a costume that does not feature anything that could block your child’s vision, such as a mask, eye patch, wig, or floppy hat. Try using FDA-approved makeup in place of a mask or eye patch. Also, make sure that hats and headscarves are tied securely to avoid them slipping over your child’s eyes.
- Be seen! – In addition to making sure your children can see well, make sure they will be seen. While it is best to go trick-or-treating before dark, we know everyone’s schedules can’t accommodate daytime trick-or-treating. If you must go after dark, carry a flashlight and equip your child’s costume with reflective tape to increase other’s ability to see them.
Check out the Real Kids Shades’ Halloween board on Pinterest for great ideas to make Halloween even more fun while maintaining your children’s eye safety, and share your own tips for having a safe and fun Halloween in the comments section below!