With Halloween fast approaching, it’s important to be just as mindful of safety as it is about satisfying your sweet tooth. In our last blog, we unveiled some essential Halloween safety tips with a particular focus on trick-or-treaters and the decorative features that transform our homes into haunted houses. Halloween, of course, isn’t just for the little ones. Both college and university students are well known for enjoying the festivities of the occasion too.
Here are four Halloween safety tips for college and university students:
1. Limit Your Alcohol Intake.
We get it. Drinking and partying go hand in hand. Be clear, however, that overdoing it with alcoholic beverages can turn your Halloween party experience into a nightmare. As the University of Saskatchewan warns, excessive drinking can lead to alcohol poisoning without you even realizing it. “Alcohol can slow down many bodily functions including breathing and the gag reflex (which prevents choking),” informs their site, “This can lead to the point of unconsciousness, after which your heart and lungs have the potential to stop.”
U of S advises students to NOT allow someone who has passed out from drinking to “sleep it off”. Instead, attempts should be made to wake the person. Call 911 if the person is unresponsive and position him/her on his/her side to avoid any choking on vomit. Check the individual’s skin colour and temperature, looking for pale, bluish or clammy skin which suggests oxygen depletion.
2. Keep your phone on with a loved one on standby.
You’re never too old to tell someone who cares about you where you’re going to be and who you will be with. This Halloween, be sure to have your phone on you, fully charged. Let a loved one know that he/she can call you at any time. It’s also a good idea to share your location with a trusted person through a location-sharing app on your smartphone. Be sure not to let your phone out of your sight. You will certainly need it in case of an emergency.
3. Have Fun Without Partying.
“It’s okay if the party scene isn’t for you,” assures the University of Guelph, “You might not be in the mood to drink, use other substances, or be in large crowds. Maybe partying isn’t your thing, you don’t like the spooky season, or you’re anxious being around so many people again. Maybe you’re choosing not to use substances, or your bank account can’t handle another night out…it’s okay to make another choice.”
4. Avoid Non-Prescribed Opioid Use.
Opioids are prescription drugs that are used to treat pain. However, many of them have become popular street drugs because of their ability to quickly get people high. The most highly-used opioids include codeine, fentanyl, morphine, oxycodone, hydromorphone and medical heroin. Sadly, they all-too-often find their ways into college and university parties. Make no mistake about it: the results can be deadly.
The Public Health Agency of Canada reports that a total of 1,904 apparent opioid toxicity deaths occurred between January and March of this year. That is an average of 21 deaths per day. If you encounter anyone partaking in opioid use this Halloween, it will be vital get them Naloxone. The medication, used to counter decreased breathing in opioid overdose, can be taken intravenously, through injection or even a nasal spray.
Red Cross is currently offering a free course entitled First Aid for Opioid Poisoning Emergencies for a limited time. This will offer you an excellent opportunity to learn how to prevent, recognize and respond to an opioid poisoning emergency.
As well, at SOS First Aid, we offer several First Aid and CPR training courses, including those that teach how to properly use Naloxone. To learn all about them, please don’t hesitate to call us at 905-844-9813. You may also email us at [email protected].[apss_share]