Down Syndrome Awareness 2021October 18, 2021
December Is National Safe Toys And Gifts MonthDecember 20, 2021
How to provide accommodations for children with disabilities during the holidays
The holidays are a time when we all get together and do something fun as a family. With the coming together, you as the host will realize that different people have different preferences regarding what they want to do for the holiday. While this can be discussed and a consensus reached, it can be harder if you have children with disabilities. The holiday plans might be great but leave them out of it, which beats the point of spending time with them in the first place. If this is something you are struggling with, you are not alone. Here are some ways you can make the holiday memorable for everyone, including children with disabilities this holiday.
Include them in the planning
One of the things you will realize when planning is that parents do most of the work on their own. While this might seem easier, it might not work for everyone. You might end up planning for activities that your children do not want, and that is what will lead to resentful thoughts. To ensure everyone is happy with the plans, let the children take place in the planning. Ask them what they would like to do and see if that is something you can budget for. By doing that, you might realize that what you thought would be fun for all of you is not what they wanted. Remember, the holidays are all about family and not just what you want.
Look at the facilities in your holiday destination
If you plan on traveling with a child with disabilities, do thorough research of the place you plan to go to. Find out if they are wheelchair friendly, especially if your child is in a wheelchair and if they have hospitals nearby. Find out if the activities you plan on doing when you get to the holiday spot are also friendly based on your child’s needs. If your child has a sensory overload taking them to a crowded area will do more harm than good. It helps if you go to a place where everyone will be happy, and there will be no panic or anxiety attacks
Consider the dietary requirements
While most people can eat almost anything and not get affected, the same might not apply to a child with a disability. Some of them might have developed severe allergies over the years that affect them greatly. As such, making them try new foods might lead to a bad reaction that can be dangerous to their health. Before you order out or eat at a restaurant, you might need to look at their menu beforehand and figure out what food they have and if that is something your child can eat. Doing this prior will ensure that your child will not feel left out when everyone is enjoying their meal. You could also ask the hotel or restaurant you are visiting to offer you a different plate of food not on the menu for your child. It might be costly, but it is all worth it in the end.
Carry the meds
If your child is on around-the-clock medication, ensure you carry those. Have enough medication to last the entire holiday and some days after if you get stuck out and cannot go back when you intend to. You will also need to go to the doctor and have them get a full body checkup if they have anything that needs to be treated. Ensure your child takes their meds in the intended schedule and monitor their vitals. Staying near a hospital will help if you notice they are coming down with something. It also helps if you carry their diagnosis if they need to be seen with a new doctor. That way, any new drug administered will not mess up with the current treatment plan.
Treat them the same
One of the things people with disabilities hate is being made to feel like they have an issue. Avoid fussing over them, especially when you are in a crowd. Let them do some things on their own such as open their food, go to the bathroom if they can, pick out their clothes, and even go on some of the rides. By treating them like you do your other children, they will get comfortable and enjoy the holiday. Fussing over them only makes the disability they have seem more obvious.
Holidays are a time to have fun with your friends and family. It is a great time to include everyone in your plans, and that should start with your child with disabilities. The tips above show that this is something you can do and everyone gets to have a good time. Try them out and have a happy holiday!