Special Needs – Sleeping

By 7th January 2017Special Needs

So at home Marcus still sleeps in his cot bed, not for much longer however. He going to get a ‘big boys’ bed. The main problem we have with his sleeping habits is that he regularly rolls out of bed. Despite boosters etc, he finds a way. Somehow he manages to stay asleep through this assault course. However , when on holiday, it’s another thing altogether.

I searched for ages trying some sort of sleeping travel system for a child with special needs. To my knowledge, one doesn’t exists. If you know different, please let me know. However, ‘Lidl’ came to the rescue.
So we found a blow up bed, which has blow up edges, just under a foot deep, with a blow up separate mattress. £20, an absolute bargain. You can buy it in Amazon now.

This comes everywhere with us. It’s wider than a single bed, but about two-thirds of the length. We tend to have Marcus sleep in our room when on holiday.  He wakes at 6am, a time a 11-year-old girl doesn’t think exists. Plus, we can have those wonderful snuggles in the morning. We have had to fudge things up when the blow up bed doesn’t fit. Dan and myself have slept separately with the kids to make sure Marcus is safe in bed. Simply pushing a bed up against a wall is often enough. Sometimes the solution takes a little more manoeuvring. But all in all, we’ve achieved this in differing accommodation, Marcus non the worse for it.

Just as an extra note, we double nappy Marcus when away. Pull-ups are great, as they tend to go up to about age 7. Saves washing sleepwear and sheets while away for a couple of weeks.

We accept that normally, on the first night, Marcus doesn’t sleep well. New bed, new place, excitement…who knows why, but he doesn’t settle. It’s the hardest night for us as we are normally really tired ourselves. But just knowing that it’s going to happen helps. You can prepare yourself for it.

At some point during the trip his normal routine kicks in. But normal for Marcus won’t be normal for your child. Marcus normal isn’t regular either. He will sleep through 60% of the time, wet the bed for about 20% and then wake up and for the last 20% will just be wide awake in the early hours.

Ipads are the best thing ever when this happens. Stick some children’s TV on YouTube, make sure he is safe in the bed, snuggle up next to him and try to get as much dozing time as you can.

Do you have any hints for getting a good night’s sleep?

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