Halloween – a Parent’s Guide to Trick or Treating

Make sure your kids' Halloween fun doesn't turn into a hellish nightmare by following these simple tips.

Sending the little monsters out into the night

Ideally children of any age should be accompanied by an adult but you may find this hard to enforce with teenagers. If you allow them to go out by themselves then lay down some firm ground rules that they should follow.

Make sure they are properly fed with a healthy meal so they won't be tempted to overdo it with sweets or chocolate and get sick.
Make sure kids take a torch with them to avoid any accidents in badly lit driveways.

Kids may need a little help with their costume. Make sure they don't go out in something that's going to let them get too cold or too hot - ensure any materials are breathable and flame-retardant. You may also want to supervise them if they are using make-up and fake blood. If you do get any spills in the house or on your clothes you can visit the Vanish site to find out how to get rid of make-up and fake blood stains.

Get them to go to the loo before they go out and make sure their costume isn't too restrictive if nature calls while they're out.
Remind them not to eat any sweets or chocolate that has been on the floor or is already open. You may even want to tell them to wait until they get home before they start eating so they won't come back with sticky sweet fingers or chocolate stains that could mess up the house.

Keeping your outdoor space safe for trick or treaters

Keep your driveway, lawn and entrance hall well-lit and clear of any hazards. Make sure any tools, hosepipes, flowerpots or extension cords are cleared away or kept well out of the way of where children could be walking. They may have costumes that restrict their vision. If you have any expensive garden ornaments or sculptures, you may also want to store them safely for the night.

Think 'safety first' when it comes to pumpkins or any other naked flames. Keep them out of walkways and consider using mains or battery-powered lights instead.

Some pets can get aggressive when frightened. Keeping them away from the entrance hall means they won't scare the kids and the kids won't scare your pets.