It's Turkey Time!
With Thanksgiving just around the corner, the idea of taking on this holiday can be very daunting, especially this year with all the uncertainty that surrounds us. Thanksgiving can be overwhelming for everyone, especially children who may struggle with sensory overload from time to time. LemonLime Adventures wrote about this struggle and included ten tips that you can try to avoid sensory overload for your child this holiday season. First, you can start by educating yourself on some important sensory needs because there are more than the 5 senses that can be involved when a meltdown arises. Next, you can try all of the foods that will be available first then you can try reviewing calming strategies with your child before the day of the gathering so they are fresh on your child's mind. If you are traveling to a family member's house, ask them ahead of time where a quiet place is in their home is that you and/or your child can retreat to if needed; you will also need to prepare your child for a change in routine. Bring a sensory kit to the gathering with you, if you do not have one, start thinking of what you could pack in yours and create a kit that will the most useful for you and your child. The article also includes doing things like "heavy work" to distract your child during the gathering, here is a list of some "heavy work" activities: https://lemonlimeadventures.com/free-chore-chart-heavy-work-focus-calm-kids-sensory/.
Next, try to alert your relatives that hugs may not be possible from your child upon arrival, let them know in advance so they don't feel your child is being rude. You could also bring along some audio books that your child can listen to when the amount of people gets too overwhelming. Lastly, the article includes that you should bring wine; this is up to you! The main idea with this point is that this is your holiday too and seeing family is also vital to your well-being, if you prepare ahead of time, things have a better chance of going smoothly. The holiday season is stressful, but it doesn't have to be totally unenjoyable.