Treats, Not Tricks- Tips on How to Make Halloween Safe and Memorable for Older Adults
Halloween or All Hallow’s Eve is a fun time of the year, and people of all ages look forward to celebrating the spookiness and fun-all year round. Candies, costumes, scary spirits, festive parties, and gifts set this holiday apart from the others, ensuring it is an occasion to celebrate.
While Halloween is the one of the most-awaited events of the year, it can sometimes be intimidating for the elderly. Older adults are often stressed and scared by the constant stream of high-spirited trick-or-treaters knocking on the door, especially if they live alone. But that doesn’t mean the elderly can’t enjoy the event.
Family and in-home caregivers can ensure that the elderly celebrate All Hallows’ Eve in a fun, safe, and healthy way. As a caregiver, you may be concerned about your client’s safety. But, preparing ahead of time can go a long way in making the event memorable for everyone.
With Halloween around the corner, here are some tips to ensure that the elderly remains safe without missing out on the fun:
- Avoid the Roads:
A general rule of thumb is to avoid excessive driving on Halloween night. Since a large number of trickers-or-treaters crowd the streets to go door to door for candy, there is a greater risk of pedestrian accidents. Instead, caregivers can arrange a daytime outdoor drive to the pumpkin patch, or indulge in pumpkin walks or contests.
While popular trick-or-treat hours are usually from 5:30 pm to 9:30pm, caregivers can help seniors plan their activity earlier in the day and be off the roads before trick-or-treat begins.
- Switch On the Lights:
Keep the interiors and exteriors of your home well-lit so that the view is clear and seen with ease. Being smart with lighting prevents unnecessary stumbling in the dark as it deters vandals who pose a threat. Keeping the lights on in dimly lit places may provide enough lighting in the hallways, making it easier for the elderly to walk in their house.
Seniors who do not wish to meet visitors at the door should consider keeping a bowl full of candy on a chair outside their front door. Alternatively, a note can be placed on the front door that says “No More Candy Left” to show that the house is no longer a part of the trick-or-treating activity. By doing this, caregivers and family members can prevent unnecessary knocking, noise, and hassle.
- Remove Hazards:
Pumpkins and candles are beautiful decorations that look amazing on the porch or the stairs. However, make sure these decorations don’t pose any tripping hazards.
If candles are used as additional decoration, ensure these are placed where they cannot be blown over by the wind or knocked over by someone.
Spooky Fun Halloween Ideas for Seniors
All these tips will make Halloween less scary for older adults. But will these safety tips add to fun & spookiness for seniors and revive their inner child memories? From spooky costumes to group-oriented outdoor fun, here are a few ideas to make sure that Halloween is an event that older adults can enjoy and celebrate along with everyone else:
- Adorn Festive Pumpkins:
October is the perfect time to bring home pumpkins and use them for Halloween fun. You can bake them into a holiday treat, carve them into pretty jack-o-lanterns, or paint them. These are not only safe and easy for everyone regardless of age but also create less mess.
- Decorate the Home:
Set out your decorated pumpkins and add spooky cobwebs, bats, fall foliage, and spiders. Or, look for decorative ways on the internet to make your home decoration look unique. Just be sure to avoid any tripping hazards.
- Enjoy a Not-too-scary Movie Night:
Make some tasty and healthy treats to enjoy on Halloween night even more fun. Wrap yourselves in a blanket and enjoy some spooky yet not-so-scary movies. Little Shop of Horrors, Beetle juice, Franken weenie, Casper, and Ghostbusters are a few.
- Dress Up to the Halloween theme:
Costumes are the best part of Halloween. If the elderly loved one wishes to don a costume, assist them and show it off in the pumpkin paradise. Keep it simple; complicated clothing can make it difficult for them to walk. Avoid masks, and ensure that costumes, accessories, and wigs are fire-resistant.
- Keep it Low-Key:
Halloween is a fun occasion, but this time of the year may bring confusion and agitation for older adults with dementia and Alzheimer’s. Excessive noise, spooky costumes, and the continuous arrival of strangers may disrupt their peace of mind.
It is best to keep things simple and help seniors spend a quiet evening in the presence of loved ones.
To Sum Up
Halloween is all about fun and creating ever-lasting memories. However, it is important to plan ahead and take precautions to ensure that older adults are safe during Halloween and can enjoy this occasion just as much as everyone else.
Wishing you and your family a Happy and Healthy Halloween!
Related blog posts:Fun Halloween Activities for Seniors and Caregivers
Less Spooky Halloween for Seniors
- Adorn Festive Pumpkins: