wild ideas for... halloween
top tips for dealing with spooky nightmares
Halloween can be blood curdling fun for many children and families, but as we dust off our fangs and brew up our potions, let's spare a thought for those children who find Halloween all a little bit too spooky and end up with nightmares and problems sleeping.
Nightmares can occur at any age but are more frequent in children under the age of 10. They can start when a child is anxious or has experienced an upsetting event.
So here are some of our top tips for managing nightmares:
Try to keep to the same bedtime routine (even at Halloween). Allow time after your Trick or Treating to relax and calm down before bedtime.
Try to make your Halloween treats as healthy as possible. Food and drink with lots of sugar and additives can disrupt our sleep and lead to heightened night time anxiety.
Accompany young children when Trick or Treating so if they are frightened you are on hand immediately to reassure them.
If your child is prone to nightmares or very young, try to keep Halloween activities age appropriate and within your child’s level of comfort. Scary masks and screaming toys may be fun for older children, but can spark off terror in those who are much younger.
Follow our fun Halloween activities that will appear on our instagram account in the run up to the big day to help to prepare for the evening.
make a magic potion to fend off fears
Much like a friendship potion, this is an activity that you can do with your child. You can gather natural resources and things that your child likes to make the potion. This could be coloured flowers or leaves, a sprinkling of dirt or glitter to represent the Good Fairy dust, some food colouring to represent different emotions, like courage and strength, happiness and laughter. An item to symbolise friends and family who look after and protect your child and they can add it to the pot and stir it up into a Magic Potion. Berries can be great to add for some natural colour.
You can put this into a jam jar with a lid on and your child can keep it beside their bed or go and shake it if they feel nervous.
You could make a sweet smelling potion and add something like lavender or rosemary and put this into a small spray bottle that your child could spray int their room before bed. Lavender is great for aiding sleep. (Maybe leave out the mud in this potion!)
make a dream catcher
You will find details of how to make one of these with your child on our website and you can customise it for Halloween if you feel it may be appropriate. You could weave a spiders web on your dream catcher or maybe add some black feathers to give it a Halloween feel.
Above all, talk to your child about the fun of Halloween and listen to any questions or concerns that they may have. There are lots of creative ways that you can start to prepare for the evening ahead and all of these conversations will make your child feel more secure and reduce the chance of nightmares.
Have a great time!