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Halloween and Mental Health: Best Self-Care Ideas in 2022

Halloween is a festive time of year for people who rejoice in ghouls, ghosts, and spooky things. But for those who suffer from mental disorders—such as anxiety, depression, or post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)—Halloween can be particularly triggering. That’s because the Halloween season can trigger a fight or flight response, as well as flashbacks and moderate mental distress among people diagnosed with mental afflictions. Moreover, even individuals who suffer from mild anxiety disorders can become overstimulated around Halloween. Likewise, nurses who have psychological distress and work in healthcare may find that they are more agitated during the Halloween season. Therefore, if you are a nurse and feel especially triggered on Halloween, know that you're not alone. In fact, we have a few Halloween self-care tips and mental health activities that will help you stay safe and balanced leading up to All Hallows’ Eve.

Halloween and Mental Health


From ghostly costumes to crowds to loud noises, these types of stimuli can trigger a person who is already sensitive. Furthermore, individuals suffering from moderate to severe mental illness can be sent into a full-blown panic attack if they become overwhelmed by Halloween stimuli. That said, whether you deal with a mild psychiatric disorder or have been diagnosed with a more serious mental disorder, avoiding certain stimuli may help you stay grounded on Halloween. On that note, here are some common things and places that can activate an emotional reaction this Halloween season:

  • Violent or scary movies 
  • Haunted houses or tours
  • Halloween themed-parties
  • Gory decorations and special effects 
  • Halloween pranks 
  • Any space involving large crowds and costumes

The reality is that some Halloween stimuli, like costumes and decorations, will be impossible to dodge altogether. In that case, you may have to rely on some Halloween self-care quotes to keep you from being triggered. As a matter of fact, Halloween self-care quotes, also known as mantras, may help alleviate anxiety or ease other mental afflictions. And while it’s best to choose a mantra that suits and calms your unique psychological state, we have a few inspiring Halloween self-care quotes to get you started:

  • I am safe; I am calm.
  • I find peace within me.
  • Fear is temporary; this too shall pass.
  • I release all fear from my body.
  • I will take each day one moment at a time.
  • I am strong in the face of fear.

Halloween Self-Care Ideas

Alongside Halloween self-care quotes, some great Halloween-themed self-care ideas can include creating some coping mechanisms if you do become triggered. Coping skills can involve setting up a support system that you can reach out to when you are in crisis. Identifying a few close friends or family members you trust will help you feel less isolated on Halloween. Similarly, if you are a nurse who is overstimulated by the Halloween season, it’s a good idea to connect with a nursing colleague that you can confide in—this will be especially helpful if you become triggered while on shift. Another way to find a supportive community during Halloween is to join a group that deals with a similar situation, which could mean finding an online support group or locating a group that meets in person. In any scenario, making a list of people you trust and maintaining a strong support network can be one of your best tools in combating mental discomfort throughout October.

Halloween-Themed Self-Care: Self-Care Box 

Who says being scared about Halloween has to be all work and no fun? Just because you may have a mental disorder doesn’t mean you can’t get creative in managing your mental well-being on Halloween. That said, why not try putting together a Halloween self care-box filled with Halloween self-care gifts for yourself? A Halloween-themed self-care box could be decorated in less-spooky decors such as pumpkins, happy ghosts, and cute smiling goblins. Inside your self-care box, you could store your favorite candy, essential oils, and Halloween self-care quotes. Additionally, your self-care box could contain some Halloween mental health activities like a Wordscapes puzzle or an art project. Your self-care box could even hold a pre-paid gift voucher to your favorite spa or a reminder to get out in nature. Whatever you choose to put in your self-care box, make sure it contains a few self-soothing Halloween mental health activities and coping tools that will make you feel at ease every time you open it. 

You Are Safe!

ghost dog

Feeling unsafe and out of control can be one of the major reasons why people who suffer from mental diseases are triggered on Halloween. Consequently, since research suggests that watching or witnessing violent events can set off an emotional response in individuals with PTSD, people with mental disorders must possess effective coping strategies. And while Halloween self-care activities can be powerful tools to ease anxiety and PTSD, if a more severe mental reaction occurs, it’s always best to reach out for professional help. In any event, we hope this Halloween season you feel safe and cared for. That said, having a strong support system, comforting mantras, and plenty of self-care activities will all play a part in keeping you healthy and happy on Halloween!

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Blog published on:
October 21, 2022

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