Halloween is just around the corner! Helping Hands For Kids wants every child to enjoy this spook-tacular day. We know that most kids cannot wait to get dressed up, don their costumes and go door to door trick-or-treating, but for kids with sensory processing disorder (SPD), Halloween may not be as much fun. For some, it can be downright stressful and nerve-wracking. However, we believe with some special planning and by following a few helpful tips, children with SPD can enjoy this boo-rrific day too!
1-2-BOO…by following these helpful tips, you can make this a day that the whole family can enjoy:
1. Picking the right costume. Let your child choose their own costume. If you know your child is sensitive to new items, have your child wear their costume many times before the event so they can get used to the "itchy" tags or fabric. If they decide they do not want to wear a costume, explain to them there is nothing wrong with that. Also, if you know your child has allergies to certain foods, pack what they can eat so that they can enjoy themselves no matter where you will be.
2. If you know you will be participating in many events for this time of year, it's a great idea to give your child a schedule - maybe even one with pictures. It's a good idea to discuss it regularly and provide as much information for each event such as the time of day the event will occur, what activities will be occurring, etc. Also, discuss with your child which coping techniques are beneficial for them to be able to handle these situations. Never surprise a child with SPD. Repetition helps children with SPD understand – and enjoy – the event.
3. With all the excitement from Halloween, implement guidelines and expectations for each event. For example, let your child know how long you will stay at the party and that you expect them to follow the rules and stay close to you.
4. If a child feels overwhelmed or stressed, explain to them they can come get you and ask to leave or to have a break. Please honor their request and even discuss some coping techniques that can be beneficial.
By following these tips, you can help to make the festivities fun and safe for everyone. Should you have any questions, or are interested in learning more about how Helping Hands For Kids can help your child perform at his/her best, please contact us.