Special Occasions/Large Gatherings/Holiday Safety
Safety recommendations for special occasions, large gatherings, and holidays include:
- When celebrations, special events, or holidays include large numbers of people, remember that it is possible that large groups may cause a person with Alzheimer's disease some confusion and anxiety. The person with Alzheimer's disease may find some situations easier and more pleasurable than others.
- Large gatherings, weddings, family reunions, or a Fourth of July picnic may be cause for anxiety. Consider having a more intimate gathering with only a few people in your home. Think about having friends and family visit in small groups rather than all at once. If you are hosting a large group, remember to prepare the person with Alzheimer's disease ahead of time. Try to have a space available where they can rest, be by themselves, or spend some time with a smaller number of people, if needed.
- Consider simplifying your holidays around the home and remember that you already may have more responsibilities than in previous years. For example, rather than cooking an elaborate dinner at Thanksgiving or Christmas, invite family and friends for a potluck dinner. Instead of elaborate decorations, consider choosing a few select items to celebrate holidays. Make sure holiday decorations do not significantly alter the environment, which might confuse the person with Alzheimer's disease.
- Holiday decorations, such as Christmas trees, lights, or menorahs, should be secured so that they do not fall or catch on fire. Anything flammable should be monitored at all times, and extra precautions should be taken so that lights or anything breakable are fixed firmly, correctly, and out of the way of those with Alzheimer's disease.
- As suggested by most manufacturers, candles of any size should never be lit without supervision. When not in use, they should be put away.
- Try to avoid clutter in general, especially in walkways, during the holidays.