Halloween is right around the corner, which means parties, candy, costumes and trick-or-treating for many. If you are helping provide in-home care for your senior loved one, then there are a number of tips you may want to consider on how to keep these seniors safe and happy this Halloween. These tips can help keep you, your loved one and the entire family safe this holiday season.
- Don’t let your loved one drive at night on Halloween. If your loved one is still able to drive, encourage them to not get behind the wheel on Halloween and any evening where little ones may be out in costume. It can be difficult not only to drive through residential neighborhoods but to pull in and out of the driveway with so many children in the road.
- If your loved one has dementia, keep the costumes to a minimum. Having multiple friends and family members over in costume can be confusing to anyone, let alone someone with dementia. This can be overwhelming for seniors with Alzheimer’s, so wait to put the costumes on until you are not around them.
- Don’t hand out candy if it will disrupt your senior. For many older adults, especially those on a set sleeping schedule or those with Alzheimer’s, trick-or-treating is a major nuisance. Having people repeatedly ring the doorbell can stress out or overwhelm any senior. If you are worried about your loved one’s reaction, consider turning off your light this season, or sitting outside with your candy so no one rings your bell.
- Keep an eye on the Halloween candy. If you are going to have Halloween candy sitting out or if you have little ones bringing Halloween candy home at the end of the night, make sure you keep a close eye on it. A senior with dementia may accidentally end up eating so much candy that it makes them sick.
- Get your loved one involved. Halloween isn’t just an activity for kids, seniors should be included too. Include your loved one in decorating the home and decorating pumpkins or watch classic Halloween movies with them. Activities such as this can make your loved one feel included in the festivities. A note on pumpkins—if you are worried about your loved one with sharp pumpkin-carving tools, paint your pumping instead.
Halloween can be a fun time for the entire family if you keep these simple safety tips in mind. Doing these things can help your loved one feel included this Halloween and make them feel as though they are in on all of the frightening fun of this special time of year.