Halloween is a notably fun event for many people, however, for those with Dementia, it can be a rather overwhelming and frightening time.
If you’re looking for some guidance on how to keep your loved ones calm over the seasonal period, we’re here to help.
Keep decorations outside of the house to a minimum
Houses covered with spooky skeletons and devilish decorations suggest a person is happy for trick or treaters to call by.
Excessive calls at the door could make a person living with Dementia rather nervous and scared. Therefore to avoid excessive knocks at the door over the Halloween period, it’s best to keep decorations to the minimum.
If you think they’d like some festive elements within the house, you could always buy some pumpkins and squashes to decorate indoors.
Stay over for the night
Halloween can be a hectic and chaotic time. Strange sounds outdoors and mysterious figures walking by can be very frightening for people living with dementia.
This is why we recommend you, a carer or a trusted friend stay over for the night.
This will provide a lot of relief to your loved one as there is someone on hand to create a comfortable and relaxed environment indoors. You also have the peace of mind knowing that a non-sufferer can answer the door, and take away the stress and fear that a dementia patient could feel answering the door on Halloween night.
A friendly face during a scary time can help those with dementia feel calmer and more reassured.
Try out some fun activities at home together
A nice way to take the fright out of Halloween is by marking the occasion with some light-hearted activities.
A nice idea is to make some pumpkin spiced biscuits or to spend some time doing an activity that you know they will enjoy.
This allows for a nice distraction from outside and keeps a fun, festive, spirit indoors.
Pop something lighthearted on the TV
When Halloween week arrives, the tv channels can sometimes prioritise scary films, which contain violent and graphic scenes.
Halloween films are designed to scare, but this tends not to be appropriate for a dementia sufferer, as scenes can trigger emotional distress.
Therefore we recommend getting something upbeat and enjoyable on the TV. This will allow the individual to take their mind off of Halloween and instead, enjoy one of their favourite box sets or documentaries.
Looking after people living with Dementia is what we do, and we want to ensure your loved ones feel safe around Halloween. Hopefully, some of these suggestions will calm their anxieties and make for a positive night together.