Halloween tips for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder
Halloween is an exciting holiday for children, but it may offer certain challenges for children with autism spectrum disorders (ASD). Preparation and planning can help you stay stress-free. Whether this is your child’s first Halloween or not, here are some ideas to help you and your child enjoy the holiday:
- Create a visual story of what Halloween may be like for your child, with some pictures or drawings. This will help your child prepare for the day’s activities.
- Try on costumes before Halloween and present costumes that are comfortable fitting. If the costume is uncomfortable or doesn’t fit right, it may cause unnecessary distress and ruin their fun.
- Consider a Halloween costume that fits over your child’s regular clothes, such as butterfly wings or capes, which can make the costume more comfortable.
- Practice going to a neighbor’s door, ringing the bell or knocking on the door and receiving candy.
- Know your child’s limits and do only what he or she can handle. For example, if your child is not comfortable trick-or-treating, you can start by going to three houses. Assess how your child is doing and build up to more houses the following year.
- Take your child to an activity in the community, such as a school festival or a neighborhood party where the child is already comfortable and knows people.
- Partner with family and friends that your child likes.
- If you are giving out candy at your home, give your child the option to give a piece of candy. During the day, practice greeting people and giving out candy.
- If your child is afraid of going out at night, plan indoor or daytime Halloween activities.
Halloween can be a fun time of year for your child and with the right preparation a great experience. For more helpful tips on helping your child reach their full potential call us today!