While most kids look forward to the holidays, Autistic Children and other cognitive impairments may find it a very stressful time of year. It may be too much for them to handle the interruption to their routine, the strange sights and smells, and the crowded, noisy home. The family is the focus of the holidays, but it may take work to maintain balance.
Autism in Children: Signs, Symptoms, Diagnosis, Causes (verywellhealth.com)
The parents of autistic children have offered the following advice for guiding the holiday season. Everyone agrees that you should make plans. Preparation is essential, whether by telling your kid a visual tale, explaining what to anticipate, or informing family members about your child’s specific requirements.
Try to discover strategies to reduce your own and your child’s stress. Establish quiet moments and relaxation areas in your house. Do not overextend yourself since your kid can sense when you are stressed.
Suppose you let your friends and relatives know; they may know how to assist. Please list how they can help, from pouring you a glass of champagne to watching your child while you spend time with your other kids.
Wrap up well-known toys.
Try wrapping up some of your child’s favourite toys if they are reluctant to open gifts since they are new and strange. It is comforting to open something familiar at times.
Provide a schedule for your child.
Children “have duties” to complete at family gatherings, such as taking coats and serving snacks. The stress of having guests around is reduced by giving them something to do. Also, please provide them with a schedule so they can realise, for example, that many people will stand about and talk throughout the event.
Control Fresh Smells
The numerous perfume fragrances from adult visitors are one issue that Autistic Children with autism complain about over the holidays. To gradually introduce fresh scents to your child’s playdough, add cinnamon. Request that your loved ones and friends do not follow your lead.
Practice giving gifts
Encourage and support your care recipient in making presents. Encourage kids to make presents for loved ones. Additionally, they enjoy providing gifts to others. This is a great chance to practise social skills, including kindness, consideration for others’ needs and interests, and consideration for others.
Make time just for your child.
This time of year, it’s easy to get overwhelmed with holiday preparations, so daily schedule activities to dedicate 5 to 10 minutes of your undivided attention to your children. Give your child the reins and see their world from their perspective.
Make a weekly schedule.
Your child will feel more at peace about the next week if you print out a week-to-view calendar page from your computer or the internet and include a picture of your planned holiday activities (split into the morning, lunch, afternoon, etc.).
Get Your Family Ready
Consult with family members in advance. Talk about your child’s requirements before announcing your objectives in a reliable but kind manner. Make sure to explain to them how this will enhance their overall experience. Request their assistance.
Prepare an activity bag.
Fill a bag with toys, plush animals, a CD player, books, and anything else your youngster finds soothing or fun to play with while visiting friends or family. Find a calm area or a back room if your child becomes overstimulated, and take out the backpack.
Prepare Using Images
They created a holiday season book including images of the child and the family enjoying. Pictures of children performing in the school play, visiting family, etc., are featured. If kids like looking at photos, we’ve discovered that it’s a terrific approach to explaining various events—they benefit from not feeling overtaken by the circumstances.
Create a group for children with autism spectrum disorders and an Alternative Experience. Plan an experience for them around this time of year rather than throwing a party. It’s far more fun for them and us as their parents since there is no pressure to comply with the expectations a social event places on them.
Simple to Open Gifts
Suppose your child struggles with fine motor skills, their cards and gifts so they can easily open them. As a result, all parties involved have a better time, and he feels accomplished.