It’s the holiday season and Halloween is just around the corner. This is the time to begin getting into the holiday spirit and reveling in the festivities. Here are some tips for staying safe and enjoying Halloween with your loved one or in a senior community.
Trick or Treating in the community.
Try inviting families and children from the local neighborhoodto come trick or treating within the facility before they hit their neighborhoods. Each resident can give away candy treats of their choice.
Choose amusing Halloween decorations and leave out thescary ones
Pumpkins probably won’t upset a senior with Alzheimer’s. But skeletons may even plastics one! Also, avoid motion- or sound-activated decorations that make spooky sounds or sudden movements.
Another reason to avoid strong décor changes, too. Repositioning furniture to house large, realistic figures can create a fall hazard for a senior with Alzheimer’s.
Share scary stories
Your residents probably know some good ones, but you can come equipped with a book or some stories from the internet just in case. If enough of your residents express an interest in sharing their own scary stories, you can make it into a contest.
Classic horror movie marathon
Your residents probably have some favorite old classic horror movies. Poll them to pick out a few of the most popular, and give them the option to come together and watch them on Halloween or in the days leading up to it.
Take a trip to your local museum or park.
Most have special Halloween exhibits that are handicap accessible. This also provides a fun, easy trip on the town.
Build your own traditions
Some seniors with Alzheimer’s may be fine answering the door for cute children dressed in costumes. But if the entire ritual is upsetting, leave a bowl of candy outside the door with instructions for neighborhood kids to take a piece or two, and stay inside to create new traditions.
Consider doing seasonal crafts, watching a fun movie, or looking through old photographs and remembering holidays past. Put the focus on fall, not Halloween. Look ahead to Thanksgiving plans or discuss favorite fall memories, such as pumpkin picking with the family.
Halloween is a great time to get everyone together and encourage friendliness. I hope these tips help you have a safe and spooky Halloween.
It takes a little muscle and it takes a little grit,