The 4th of July is a time for celebration for most people. However, it can also be a time of stress for those veterans who have post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) as well as for those who are living with physical disabilities.
The following are some safety tips as well as general information to keep in mind as you celebrate this year.
#1 Find out where the fireworks are happening.
If you can find out where the fireworks are happening, let the person with PTSD know.
Sudden, loud noises can be frightening for many people (and pets). If you know someone with PTSD, give them a heads up to let them know where and when the fireworks will take place. This will give them a chance to prepare or leave early to avoid the fireworks display.
#2 – Have ear plus or music handy.
If you live with or know someone who suffers from PTSD, noise cancelling headphones or ear plugs can be life savers and make the fireworks noise less stressful.
#3 – Keep water nearby.
If you are setting off fireworks or are near someone else who is setting off fireworks, be sure to keep a bucket of water (or other water source) nearby in case you need to extinguish a fire/fireworks.
You should never handle fireworks yourself. Rather, it is in your best interest to leave fireworks to the professionals!
#4 – Be prepared to be outside.
If you’re traveling by wheelchair to see a fireworks display, be prepared to be outside for a while. Depending on where you live and the weather, you may want to take a light jacket with you as well as some water to stay hydrated.
Check to see that the venue has wheelchair access ahead of time to help avoid any issues.
#5 – Take the celebration indoors.
4th of July festivities don’t always have to happen outdoors. Instead, you can plan fun activities to do inside, such as board games, movies, food, singing America-themed songs and more.