It’s that time of year again. It’s the time of year when our little kids transform into scary monsters, fashionable princesses or adorable animals. Halloween can pose a hazard to your munchkin’s feet. You remember when you were young. Running house to house trick-or-treating inevitably led to tripping over a fallen branch, stepping in a hole in the yard or slipping on fallen acorns. Just like the old days, running house to house in the dark can make kids ripe for foot injuries, or make an existing problem act up. Proper foot wear will prevent cuts (and consequential infections) from stepping on broken glass or other unseen hazards that can lead to ankle sprains or broken toes. So, you may be thinking, what is the proper foot wear for a ninja turtle or a fairy princess?
Sneakers are always the best option of foot wear for walking and running. They are supportive and are designed to promote healthy feet in addition to being a barrier to sharp and dangerous objects. Flat shoes, such as flip flops, are not designed to have any support and leave your kids toes exposed which can increase the risk of cuts from stepping on sharp objects. Specialty shoes that come with costumes are not always optimal. They tend not to fit a child’s foot properly and can easily lead to twisted ankles especially when your child is trying to navigate dark stairs to reach front doors.
Another helpful tip is to make sure your child’s costume is the right length. Tripping over costumes in the dark is a very real hazard. Hemming your princess’s dress slightly shorter so it isn’t a hazard may prevent ankle and foot injuries as your young one is collecting her candy. It is okay not to have your little princess, ninja or scarecrow be totally authentic if it means keeping their feet safe in the right shoes. To keep the costumes as authentic as possible, you may even want to look into shoe covers sold at Halloween stores. If you already have the sewing kit out, you could even make your own! Check out this tutorial for a step by step guide on how to construct a shoe cover: http://blog.fabric.com/2011/09/childs_halloween_costume_part3.html
Also, be sure to have your little goblin run around the neighborhood with a flashlight so they can light their way and avoid hazards that could cause a sprained ankle. For very little kids, holding their hand and helping them navigate the dark terrain can make a world of difference in preventing injury. Everyone wants kids to have the best time possible Halloween night and that means keeping kids’ feet safe with supportive shoes that kids can easily walk and run in.
Dr. Mark Green, a Kansas City podiatrist and his staff at Kansas City Foot and Ankle serving Olathe, Overland Park and all of the greater Kansas City area wish you and your children a Happy Halloween.
If your little witch or goblin should happen to twist their ankle or hurt their foot, we are here to help with same day appointments often available. Please visit our website or call our office at 816-943-1111.