It's the spooky season, but assistive technology doesn't have to be scary!
Assistive technology (AT) is any device or tool that helps you safely and independently complete your daily activities, from brushing your teeth and getting dressed, to communicating with your loved ones and getting out in the community.
It can be as simple as a can opener, or as complex as a wheelchair or communication device, but what each person needs will be different and unique to them.
Halloween is just around the corner, and with the spooky holiday becoming more popular, helping everyone enjoy it is important – and that is where AT comes in.
Here are our suggested AT solutions to help you or your family have fun this Halloween.
Getting Dressed in Your Costume
Costumes are one of the best things about Halloween – getting to dress up as a witch, vampire, or your favourite character, can be fun for everyone, and especially kids.
AT can help you or your loved one get dressed in their costume in a more accessible way. Aspects of clothing such as buttons or zips can be difficult if you struggle with fine motor skills, or if they mobility issues, and find putting on socks, pants, or shirts inaccessible.
Dressing aids can come with loops, hooks, or Velcro that make it easier to reach items of clothing, pull them up, or hold items in place, and make dressing independently possible.
→ see more dressing aids
Trick or Treating
Another key part of Halloween is trick or treating. Receiving candy or another treat is certainly an exciting part of the night, but some people with disabilities can experience difficulties due to the inaccessibility of houses, or communication.
For those who are doing the trick or treating, particularly those with communication needs, even simple AT such as yes/no bands can help them communicate with neighbours. PODD Books and activity boards are also a fantastic tool for people to use when trick or treating. They can be customised to assist each individual user to communicate what they want, including greetings like “Happy Halloween” or “Trick or Treat”, or introducing what their costume is, or asking if they can have some candy or another treat.
Trick-or-treaters may also benefit from sensory aids to help them regulate during conversations, if they are feeling overwhelmed or nervous about approaching a neighbour. Fidget toys can assist them in feeling calm and safe, but they also may be a good alternative to candy for those who are unable to have sweets for a variety of reasons.
A key part of trick or treating is ringing the doorbell, which can be difficult for those at home to hear or recognise. Doorbell kits offer more accessible ways to know when someone is at your door, especially for those who are D/deaf, hard of hearing, or need a visual or another sensory cue.
Here are some other resources you can use to make Halloween inclusive for everyone: