One of the most common calls to the Idaho Poison Center at this time of year involves glow sticks. Parents often give them to their children to make them easier to see in the dark as they trick-or-treat. However, they are soft to chew on and can break open easily. If the liquid comes into contact with your child’s mouth or the eyes, it can cause stinging and a burning sensation, but there is no need to run to an emergency room. Call the Poison Center at 1-800-222-1222 and a nurse will help.
The Poison Center managed 134 calls about glow sticks last year, and the calls are on track to reach that number again this year. No spells will be cast on young spooks this Halloween with a few sensible tips from the Idaho Poison Center.
- All treats collected during trick-or-treating should be carefully checked by adults. Homemade treats or anything out of its original wrapper should be thrown away unless parents know the person who gave the goodies.
- Marijuana edibles can be found in many shapes and sizes; they resemble traditional candies in their names and packaging. This is another good reason to check all your children’s candy when they get home.
- Give your kids dinner before heading out. Starting on a full belly may reduce the temptation to eat treats before they get back home.
- Costumes should be warm, fit well and be non-flammable. Masks should be easy to see out of, but they also should be removed when children are crossing streets.
- Use inexpensive, nontoxic face paint as an alternative to masks. But make sure to remove all makeup and fluorescent hair sprays before bed.
- Consider using reflective tape on costumes so they are easier to see after dark.
- Carry a flashlight if it will be dark during trick-or-treating.
- Give out stickers, pencils, erasers, or other party favors instead of unhealthy candy.
- Sponsor a block party as an alternative to trick-or-treating. Parties at home can substitute for, or at least shorten, trick-or-treat trips.
- Serving punch containing dry ice is not considered dangerous as long as the ice is not swallowed in its solid form. But be aware that small pieces should not be put in individual glasses. Frostbite can happen if dry ice touches the skin or mouth.
- Chocolate is very poisonous to dogs. Store all candy up and out of reach of dogs.
The Idaho Poison Center offers tips on Halloween safety and poison prevention. For more information, contact the center at 1-800-222-1222.