Towards the end of October are the holidays of Halloween, Bonfire Night and Mischief Night. Whilst these holidays are a great source of fun and entertainment for young people, they can be scary and intimidating for the elderly and vulnerable.
The antisocial behaviour, loud noises and costumes can make elderly and vulnerable people feel anxious and afraid in their own homes. As their carer, there are various steps you can take to reassure your Customers;
Halloween – October 31st
- Put a ‘No Trick or Treaters’ sign on the door and windows – If the person you are caring for does not wish to have any trick or treaters, make sure you put some clearly visible signs outside of the home to let people know not to call at that house.
- Keep The Front Door and Hallway Well Lit – Ensuring that your patients have a clear view around their home will make them feel more at ease, particularly if they can visibly see around the front of their home.
- Ensure That All Windows Are Closed and Secure – Keep the windows secure and shut, this will help keep out the noise from passers-by which can be distressing for your customers.
- Help Them – If your customers do want to offer sweets to trick or treaters, help them. Stand with them at the door and help them offer out the sweets where possible. When the sweets have all gone or your customers doesn’t want to do any more, ensure that they have signs available saying that there are ‘No More Sweets.
- Offer Distractions – If you customers are finding the night distressing, offer a range of distractions to take their mind off it. Close the curtains and play their favourite film, listen to their favourite music or play games such as puzzles, crosswords or board games.
Bonfire Night – November 5th
- Find Out Where The Local Events Are – Lookup where all the local displays are happening. If any displays are happening close to your customers house, you can prepare them for the noise and increased number of people that will be in the area at a specific time and date.
- Keep The Windows Shut, Locked And Curtains Closed – If your customers finds the fireworks and noise frightening, close and secure the windows and keep the curtains closed. This will reduce the noise from the fireworks and keep them out of sight for your customer.
- Turn the Volume Up – Offer distraction such as Music or Television and turn the volume higher than you would normally have it. This will cover up the noise from the fireworks.
- Ask Neighbours – Find out from your customers neighbours if they are planning on having their own displays at home. You will be able to prepare your customer for which house plans to set off fireworks and at what time and date.
Mischief Night October – November
Mischief night is usually on October the 30th, however, it can occur on different nights in different parts of the country such as November 4th. It is best to be prepared throughout the Halloween and Bonfire season.
- Keep The Lights On – Keep your customers house well lit. Have the living room and hallway lights on, as well as checking that all outdoor lights work.
- Keep the Phone Visible and Charged – Keeping the phone accessible will help reassure your customers who feel under threat. Knowing they are able to call for help instantly can lower their anxiety.
- Keep Pets In – If your customer has any pets, like a cat, make sure that you keep them inside. Many people worry about their pets during mischief night, as there have been reports of pets being attacked. Keeping your customers pet inside will stop them worrying.
- Keep Doors and Windows Secure – Ensure that you keep the windows and doors shut and locked. This will help your customer feel more secure in their own home.
- Remove Anything From The Front of The House – Remove anything from the front of the house which could be vandalised, such as flowerpots, ornaments, lawn furniture.
As a carer you make a real difference to your customers life at this time of year, keeping them calm and anxiety-free can make a huge difference to their health.
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