As soon as something is labeled as medical, the cost immediately jumps up. There are so many things that families need and use that don’t necessarily have to be “medical” to work. But they do need to be affordable.
Many of us worry about our kids falling out of their beds once they move out of the crib. Yes, there are medical beds that are amazing. Some have side walls, hydraulics to lift or lower, some even have roofs to keep kids from getting out of bed when they shouldn’t.
But many of us don’t need that much. We just need something to make sure that our kids don’t roll over and fall to the floor. You can find all kinds of options in baby stores, on Amazon, Target, etc. that will work just fine. These range from $20 to a few hundred dollars, depending on how fancy you get.
Here is a much easier and cheaper option: pool noodles! Some places sell extra thick pool noodles and those are even better. Walmart usually carries the thicker ones during the summer months. You simply tuck these under the fitted sheet and presto you have bed rails. If you or someone you know can sew, you can also sew the noodles into place so that they don’t move around.
Here’s another great use for pool noodles: a sensory pool. If you buy a handful of noodles at the end of the summer when stores just want to get rid of them, you can do this project super cheap. All you need is pool noodles and a kiddie pool (also cheap to grab at the end of the summer).
Cut the noodle into pieces about 3 inches long. A noodle is typically 5-6 feet which allows for 20-25 pieces per noodle. You can use a variety of colors, too. The size of the pool you select will determine how many noodles you may need. Toss the pieces into the pool until it is filled to the depth of your choice. When you are done you will have an affordable “ball” pit that is sure to please.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, we asked parents of children with disabilities and special health care needs to share their tips and stories about caring for their children during difficult times.