The Fourth of July is a wonderful time for most Americans, celebrating independence and the birth of our nation with friends, good food, and fireworks. Unfortunately, there are many Americans that also face unique challenges during this holiday. People suffering from sensory issues and autism often report that July 4th is a difficult day, filled with sudden sounds and challenges that they don’t usually have to face. I’ve put together a few tips to make this year’s Independence Day an autism friendly Fourth of July.
So without further ado, here are a few ways to make this year’s celebration an autism friendly Fourth of July:
Talk To Your Child
Talking to your child in advance is one of the most important steps in ensuring you have an autism friendly Fourth of July. Try to explain to your child in advance the situation. Especially if you are going to an event, it is paramount that you let your child know that fireworks are bright and can be loud. If your child has never seen fireworks before, show them videos on YouTube. Depending on your child’s sensitivity, you should consider starting with the volume low first.
Have Comforting Items Handy
Whether going to an event or staying at home, you should have comforting items handy to help make this holiday an autism friendly Fourth of July. You should have an idea of what comforts your child: maybe a blanket or a specific toy. Furthermore, you should also consider headphones to help reduce the excessive noise. Snacks are also helpful to calm your child down or provide a distraction.
It’s always important to monitor your child’s mood, but during the Fourth of July, it’s even more important. Keep an eye on how your child is feeling and react accordingly. Be prepared to comfort them, but also try and anticipate their needs ahead of time. Have a system in place so that your child can ask for a break even when they’re overwhelmed.
The Fourth of July can be an exciting time for your child, especially if you prepare your child ahead of time. If you need help talking to your child, or more advice on how to help your child enjoy an autism-friendly Fourth of July, contact me today and schedule an appointment!