Trick-or-treating with the little ones should be fun, but it can be dangerous if parents and kids don’t take simple precautions.

Parents - here are a few tips for a safe, healthy Halloween that you can share with your kids. These tips are courtesy of Dr. Vasiliki Papadimitriou, a pediatrician with West Boca Medical Center in Boca Raton:

  • Eat before you trick-or-treat. Eating a healthy, complete meal prior to trick-or-treating will discourage your little one from eating treats during the evening.

  • Save the best for last. Ration treats over the next several days so kids don't eat too much at once.

  • Make sure candy is ok before letting your kids eat it. Closely check and sort treats to make sure they haven't been tampered with. Throw away treats that look spoiled, aren’t enclosed or just don’t look right.

  • Make sure there’s a grownup nearby at all times. Children should always be accompanied by an adult, and it's always safer to trick-or-treat in groups.

  • It’s dark out there; be ready! Carry a flashlight, cell phone (for quick communication) and place reflective tape on costumes.

  • Knock on the door, but don’t enter! Never enter a home for a treat and walk on well-lit streets.

  • Don’t think cars see you. Watch out for drivers in neighborhood and never assume the right-of-way. Of course, always notify authorities of suspicious activity.

  • Stand out from the crowd. Attempt to plan for costumes that are bright (if not, with reflective tape). Have kids wear comfortable shoes. Make sure costumes are not so long that kids get tangled in them or trip.

  • Show that pretty or handsome face. Try to avoid masks, as they may limit visibility.

  • Regular paint is not meant for your skin. Use non-toxic makeup and hats/wigs that do not slide over the eyes.

  • Costumes should be awesome and safe. Make sure that costume accessories are flame-resistant.

Dr. Papadimitriou practices at 19615 S State Rd 7, Boca Raton, 561/477-7700.

About Lisette
Lisette Hilton, president of Words Come Alive, has had the luxury of reporting on health, fitness and other hot topics for more than 23 years. The longtime Boca Raton resident, University of Florida graduate and fitness buff writes for local, regional and national publications and websites. Find out more on