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News Releases

For Immediate Release

Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh Helps Parents Make Halloween a Night of Boos, not Boo-boos

Is that candy safe to eat? Is that face paint toxic? Experts at Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh are offering safety tips and other reminders to ensure kids and parents have a fun but safe Halloween this year.

Halloween may present a variety of risks to children, including dangers from motor vehicles, tampered candy and unsafe costumes. Tips from Children’s Injury Prevention Web site,, offer parents practical advice on everything from choosing the right costume and face paint to making sure candy is safe to eat.

Also, child development experts at Children’s warn that pre-schoolers and toddlers may have difficulty differentiating between reality and fantasy. With that in mind, it may be necessary for younger children to avoid haunted houses and other scary aspects of Halloween. If kids are exposed to these types of activities, Children’s experts recommend parents talk to kids in advance about the difference between reality and make-believe.

Other tips available at Children’s Web site include:

  • Make sure that all children have adult supervision when trick-or-treating.
  • Make sure children are cautious when crossing streets.
  • Instruct children not to eat any treats until they get home and have them checked by an adult.
  • Contact police if any treats have been tampered with.
  • When choosing or making a costume, make sure it is made of fire-resistant material and reflective, bright colors.
  • Give children reflective, bright-colored trick-or-treat bags.
  • If using face paint or make-up, make sure that the ingredient labels say “made with U.S. approved colored additives,” “laboratory tested,” “non-toxic,” or “meets federal standards for cosmetics.”
  • Carry a flashlight.
  • Make sure your home is well-lit for visiting trick-or-treaters.

In addition to Halloween safety tips available from Children’s, pediatric emergency and trauma physicians and child development experts are available for interviews.

Melanie Finnigan, 412-692-5016,
Marc Lukasiak, 412-692-5016,

Last Update
June 17, 2008
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Last Update
June 17, 2008