Some kids are hypersensitive to the noise, light that fireworks generate

Here are some tips that could help them cope
(Source: WSFA 12 News)
Published: Jul. 4, 2022 at 11:39 PM CDT
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SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) — The sporadic, loud noises associated with fireworks can make related holidays especially stressful for people with sensory sensitivities and their families.

Instead of being enjoyable, fireworks can be really scary for them.

“You could get a meltdown, screaming, running,” said Latonzia Montgomery, owner/director of Excel Autism Behavioral Education Center.

She has three children with autism. Montgomery said her son Daniel dislikes fireworks the most.

“Just hearing a lot of popping noises going off, it’s like ‘come find me, keep me safe!’”

Daniel was a runner. You didn’t want anything to startle him because then you have a chase on your hands.

Behavior analyst Traynee Rash said that kind of reaction is not uncommon for people with sensory sensitivities.

So there are some things to keep in mind.

If you’re a parent, you can try to prepare your child by reminding them that fireworks will be going off.

Also, give your child a choice and make the necessary modifications, like watching fireworks from the car or giving them noise-cancelling headphones.

You should also be alert at all times.

“Some of our kids are hypersensitive to the noise. Some of our kids are hyperfocused on the light,” said Rash, of Allied Health Professions at LSU Health Shreveport. “So they might run toward the light. You want to make sure that they might not bolt and that you’re ready for that in case they bolt. Some kids may bolt away fromt the noise. Some kids may bolt toward the light.

“I would say choice and letting them know what’s happening is huge,” Rash continued. “You can use all other things like noise-cancelling headphones, white noise machines, their favorite television shows, all of those things to drown out some of that noise.”

Montgomery said she has own technique, as well.

“What we’ve done is practice a little before. Stay in the house, pop a few things and see how he reacts to that.”

Ultimately, Montgomery believes, they just want to be protected. And as a mom, she said, she does her best to ensure her kids know that they are.

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