What you need to know about the dangers of Halloween

Halloween can be a lot of fun for the whole family, but it is also a time for parents to be extra cautious. Beyond the spooky costumes, a couple of factors make Halloween scary: The number of kids walking on the streets and the abundance of candy.

Twice as many kids are hit by cars on Halloween than on an average day. Dr. Karen Latimer recommends using reflective tape on costumes to make sure drivers can see your kids, even on a dark night. Also, make sure your kids can see out of their Halloween costumes, and also give them a flashlight to carry around with them.

RELATED: Watch out for these candies 17 PHOTOSThe Best And Worst Halloween Candies For Your HealthSee GalleryThe Best And Worst Halloween Candies For Your Health

Tootsie Rolls

Since these treats boast no saturated fat, it’s only the sugar content you should consider. Six Tootsie Rolls have 140 calories and 21 grams of sugar, but be mindful that after six Tootsie Roll Midgees, the trans fat content could begin to add up. Chew slowly and enjoy the sweets moderation!

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York Peppermint Patty

A snack sized York Peppermint Patty contains a reasonable 60 calories and 1 gram of fat. Hint: they’re great frozen treats too. If you stick to peppermints during Halloween you’ll be in good shape, and have the best breath!

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Enjoying an entire roll of Smarties will only set you back 25 calories. Even if the candy is entirely comprised of sugar, hopefully popping them into your mouth one at a time will slow down your craving. If you enjoy Smarties, try Pez too for fun, small treat.

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Jolly Ranchers

Since Jolly Ranchers are hard candies they tend to be longer lasting, should keep you satisfied by enjoying the sweet more slowly. Three pieces contain about 70 calories and a modest 11 grams of sugar. Try other hard candies for a long-lasting sweet.

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Candy Corns

Boasting no fat, Candy Corns can be enjoyed by the handful without feeling too guilty. About 11 pieces contain 70 calories and 14 grams of sugar. Just be careful to keep count!

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Now And Later

Eating four Now and Laters will only set you back .5 grams of fat and 53 calories. Hopefully all the chewing will tire out your jaw to keep your from eating more. A few Starbursts GummiBursts could help to quench your fruity craving too. They also happen to be a nonfat candy.

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Fun Size Peanut M&Ms

Since peanuts can actually fall into the category of “healthy nuts,” Peanut M&Ms will be more filling than ordinary ones. One Fun Size pack of Peanut M&Ms contains only 90 calories and nine grams of sugar. Try dark chocolate covered almonds for a candy that could almost pass for a super food!

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Fun Size 3 Musketeers

3 Musketeers Bars are reasonable fun size candy bars. With only 63 calories and 10 grams of sugar, 3 Musketeers are one of the few candy bars to enjoy in moderation during Halloween. Try other caramel-free candy bars like the classic Hershey bar or a Krackel.

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The Worst

Read on for candies you should probably consider sharing.

Regular Sized Bars

A “regular” sized candy bar is just too big of a portion for a snack or dessert. They can contain well over 300 calories and way too much fat. Save these huge candy bars for a special occasion or share them.

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Caramel-Filled Candy

Your dentist will be the first one to tell you to avoid caramels on Halloween — and the rest of the year! However, now caramel is hidden in all sorts of candy bars. Be mindful!Imag

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Halloween-Themed Treats

Even thought they’re festive, Halloween-themed goodies can just be bigger versions of the already too sugary candies. In terms of calorie content there is a big difference between, some candies have two-thirds more calories than their original counterparts.

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Peanut Butter-Filled Candies

Sure, peanuts can boast some health benefits in moderation, but the peanut filling that goes into a candy bar is far from the kind you’d find in a jar. It’s filled with sugar and fat and sometimes even partially hydrogenated vegetable oil.

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Nougat Candy

Nougat is made of nuts and honey, but that doesn’t make it any more “natural” than other candies.

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Sour Candies

Just because it’s not advertised as sweet does not make sour candies any better for you. Sour candies aren’t just bad for your teeth, they can be acidic to them!

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Gummy Candies

Gummy candies don’t usually have a high fat content, but they are in no way nutritious. In fact, there is almost nothing nutritionally beneficial in Gummy Candy.

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Marshmallow Candy

An added marshmallow center increases the amount of sugar in your candy by a lot. One marshmallow can be relatively reasonable as a sweet snack, but it is difficult to discover how much is a chocolate-covered marshmallow sweet.

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Wearing sneakers, reminding your kids to use sidewalks and crosswalks and avoiding costumes with cumbersome props and especially weapons will all make for a safer night of trick or treating.

The sheer amount of candy given to kids on Halloween can (and should) give parents pause as well. There are both long-term and short-term risks when kids have a massive intake of candy. Check out all the risks below and avoid them by offering alternatives to candy (like spooky temporary tattoos) or allowing kids to have a couple pieces of candy a day.

Risks of Halloween candy:

  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Tooth decay
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Night terrors
  • Stomachaches
  • Problems with attention span
  • Weakening the immune system
  • Fatigue
  • Depression

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