Jennifer Martin, CareContent

Halloween For Health Nerds Like Us: 7 Kids’ Costume Ideas

If you’re a mom or a dad, you’re swept up in Halloween fever by now. Princess hats. Harry Potter wands. The Darth Vader mask your kid wears to bed—even though he’s afraid of the dark.

But if you don’t have your child’s costume yet, don’t feel bad. The reason goes without saying: You’re a parent. You’re busy. You’re taking care of kids, jobs, and the dog who ate your scented candles and is now pooping pumpkin and bergamot.

At CareContent, we sympathize. And we have some easy costume ideas for you, featuring parts of the immune system.

Why? Well, we’re health nerds, for one thing, so all that ooky stuff interests us. Plus, it’s a great opportunity to remind everyone—especially kids—to wash their hands often, since we’re in the midst of flu season.

(Pssst … everyone should get a flu shot, too. But we won’t say that around your kids.)

If you haven’t hit the costume store yet, here are some fun (and funny) ideas.

Costume Idea #1: Lymph Glands/Lymph Nodes

14423993_10208435571699288_1853992018_oWhat They Do:

Lymph glands and lymph nodes contain special cells that make antibodies (infection fighters).

Cool Fact:

They’re not just in your neck and armpits. They’re all throughout your body.

What You’ll Need:

   •   Light-colored body suit
   •   Any stringy green material, such as ribbon, felt, yarn, or balloons
   •   Fabric glue

Sources: US National Library of Medicine; American Academy of Family Physicians

Costume Idea #2: White Blood Cell

white_blood_cellWhat It Does:

A white blood cell “eats” viruses and bacteria, or “zaps” them with special enzymes or antibodies.

Cool Fact:

Your body makes 100 billion white blood cells per day. 

What You’ll Need:

w•  Dark-colored ski cap and shirt
   •   Cotton balls
   •   White balloons
   •   Fabric glue
   •   Optional: white face paint

Sources: US National Library of Medicine, Merck Manuals

Costume Idea #3: Spleen

spleenWhat It Does:

The spleen stores white blood cells and destroys your body’s old, defective cells.

Cool Fact:

Even though the spleen is important, you can live without it.

What You’ll Need:

   •   Felt fabric (dark purplish red for the body, red and blue for veins)
   •   Fabric glue and staples

Source: US National Library of Medicine

Costume Ideas #4 and #5: Tonsils And Adenoids

adenoid1tonsil1What They Do:

Tonsils and adenoids trap bacteria and viruses that enter your mouth and nose.

Cool Fact:

Adenoids shrink as kids grow older.

What You’ll Need:

w•  Pink clothes or bodysuits
   •   Wadded-up socks stuffed in pillowcases
   •   White posterboard
   •   Dental floss or fabric glue to attach posterboard
   •   Optional: Plastic sword

Source: US National Library of Medicine

Costume Idea #6: Antibody

antibody2What It Does:

An antibody “tags” foreign invaders (like viruses), so the immune system can find them.

Cool Fact:

Antibodies are Y-shaped.

What You’ll Need:

w•  Dark shirt and pants
   •   Fabric (like felt) or poster board cut into Y shapes
   •   Fabric glue
   •   Knit cap
   •   Sunglasses

Sources: US National Library of Medicine,, Merck Manuals

Costume Idea #7: T Cells

tcell1What They Do:

T cells destroy body cells already infected with viruses and bacteria.

Cool Fact:

Scientists are studying how to adapt T cells to attack cancer cells.

What You’ll Need:

w•  Dark bodysuit or clothes
   •   Poster board covered in tin foil
   •   Shoelace or string (for hanging T over-the-neck)
   •   Superhero cape

Sources: US National Library of Medicine, National Cancer Institute

Special thanks to our models:

Hadley Douglas, Lucas and Chase Fenceroy, Ricky Grey, Quinn Riepl, Hannah and Lily Tatel