Trick or Treat: Safe Halloween Alternatives for ASD Families
Spooky season is here and with it lots of celebrations and festivities. Although Halloween is considered by most children as one of the happiest seasons of the year, it can represent a challenge for parents and families on the spectrum.
People, noises, lights, candies, and many sensory stimuli can end up in sensory overload and ASD meltdowns, and now with the COVID-19 restrictions, trick or tricking might not be the best idea. However, it is possible to have fun and safe on Halloween night and join the festivity while avoiding its complications.
Today, we will share a few tips that will ensure spooky fun for the whole family!
Spooky Treasure Hunt
For socially challenged children this is an incredible way to have fun at home! All you have to do is print the treasure hunt page and fill in space with stuff you have at home (shoes, socks, a toy, etc). The goal of the game is to include your child in a fun/Halloween treasure hunt that will help him/her feel included in the festivities while skipping the not-so-fun parts.
Tip: Remember to add a tiny price at the end of the game! A healthy treat is always a good choice.
Backyard Trick or Treating
This is an incredible option to help your child bond with his/her siblings. All you need to do is set up some tables in your backyard and offer treats in each one of them. Some treats can be healthy sweet options, and the other ones can be Halloween-related activities like pumpkin carving, or even a small toy.
Remember, the goal is to have your child going through the tables while trick or treating, allowing him/her to have fun while being rewarded.
Read a Halloween Book
This is another great activity if your child is more into indoor activities. For this, you can turn off your living room lights and give your child a little lantern to hold. This can also be a great way to have fun while avoiding crowds and chilling evenings.
Little Witch’s Big Night, is an incredible option to read and have fun with.
Slime is an old-time favorite of ASD children, which is also great for sensory stimulation. The slime in the following video is amazing for autistic children to play with and it requires only 3 ingredients (Glue, food coloring, and contact lens solution)!
Dress Up and Visit a Pumpkin Patch
If you feel like going out of the house to dig deeper into the festivity in a safe way, try visiting a pumpkin patch or apple field while dressed up. Some pumpkin patches and corn mazes remain open, but with the required protection measures.
For the costume, you can pick up your child’s favorite character at the moment and just wear a t-shirt or sweatshirt with that theme, or you can just get a footed pajama for extra comfort. If you lack time you can just use a soft flannel shirt and an overall to create a farmer look. Remember, the goal is to have fun while being comfortable and avoiding sensory issues.
Tip: We highly recommend you to allow your child to pick up his/her costume. Additionally, let them wear it before going into any activities to ensure that it’s comfortable enough. For this activity, your child will be required to wear a facemask, if he/she can’t wear one, we encourage you to read our blog post Most Autistic Children Can’t Tolerate Face Masks. Here’s How To Manage It!.
The objective of this article is to provide you with fun options to make your Halloween enjoyable and stress–free. Remember, the goal is always to build incredible memories with your child, so have fun and embrace the moment!
At WSCC, we offer support for autistic families and their children with Stem Cell Therapy treatments that can transform autistic conditions by healing the gut, decreasing inflammation, and improving brain function. We also created an autistic community on Facebook that is destined to offer support and companionship for ASD parents and their families on their journey.
Remember, you are not alone!