Halloween Costume Ideas for the Physically Challenged

Provided by: Quest, Written by: Ramona Taylor

Halloween is one of the most exciting holidays for children. No one wants to be left out of the fun of trick or treating or holiday parties. However, for some people with physical disabilities, the simple task of finding a costume can be a struggle. Most standard costumes are not designed to adapt to wheelchairs, canes or specialty shoes; however, a physically diabled person need not give up on the hope of being a princess or pirate on October 31st. There are a number of great costumes and costume ideas that can be adapted for any disability. The simple rule for finding or making costumes for disabled trick or treaters (and party goers) is to look for an outfit that blends comfort, functionality and most importantly fun.

For a person that uses a wheelchair, almost any costume can be turned into a wheelchair friendly costume. And, costumes don’t have to be expensive to be fun. Adults and kids can opt to be anything from vampires to royalty. For your little princesses, a wheelchair is a magic coach or a magic carpet. For those sporty dudes, a wheelchair can be a sports car or a train. The sky is really the limit. Wheelchairs can be a great accessory to a conductor’s costume or even an astronaut’s costume. For adult costumes, a wheelchair makes a great throne or castle tower.
For those trick or treaters that do not use wheelchairs, who need assistance, wagons or strollers can be decorated and made a central part of their own costume or an accessory. A clever cowboy can have his wagon covered or an Eskimo can use his sled. You can dress your child as an egg or bunny with his stroller or wagon as his basket.

For children with visual impairments, costumes or accessories that block their eyes don’t necessarily have to be avoided. Our special trick or treaters can be pirates or a English gentlemen. Replace masks with face paint and exchange hoods with caps, and hats. For those kids with service dogs, dress their dog as well. Your child could be a circus performer and their dog can be their very well trained lion.

For those parents who want help in designing or making costumes, there are several resources in bookstores and on the web. Some sites, such as Family Education, provide costume making instructions. Also, organizations, such as the Muscular Dystrophy Association (MDA) and The Bridge School, offer tips and examples of costume ideas. Charities, like Costumes for Kids, collects used costumes and offers them to physically disabled kids.

Halloween is mean to be fun for everyone. And, there are so many ideas and options for making the night a very special one.
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or more ideas and information, check out the websites in the sidebar.

Find Support

Have some ideas about great costumes for children with disabilities?

Visit the My Child Without Limits support community and talk to parents and caregivers about how you made Halloween fun for your child.

Resources:

Accessible Costumes
Featuring pictures of imaginative costumes that incorporate wheelchairs

Safety Tips
Halloween Tips for Kids with Special Needs