This article is written by Elise Morgan. All content provided is for informational purposes only. Always adapt and apply suggestions based on your child’s needs.
While it is always important to ensure your home and property are safe for your children, this becomes even more crucial when you consider how many obstacles and dangers there can be for child with physical and intellectual disabilities.
Standard Bedroom Designs May Not be the Best for Your Child
It can be easy to overlook how even the smallest things can present significant challenges to children who have physical disabilities. Bright lighting, poor insulation (which allows too many outside noises in), or not enough room to navigate in wheelchairs or other mobility devices are just a few examples. Below are a few tips on how to better improve the environment in your child’s bedroom.
Ways to Improve the Accessibility and Safety in Your Child’s Room
Make Sure the A/C and Heat are at Comfortable Settings
Oftentimes in a home, the temperature can be different in individual rooms than what the thermostat is set to. While this may not be a big issue for some children, for those who have disabilities, when they are physically uncomfortable by being too cold or too hot, it can create a distraction and become a source of aggravation.
Find the Right Type of Sleep Environment
Just as with adults, every child has their own preference when it comes to the firmness or softness of their bedding. For children with disabilities, it can be even more signficant because failure to get a proper and consistent amount of sleep can exacerbate their sensitivities. Insomnia and sleep anxiety can significantly amplify conditions such as ADHD and autism.
Adjust Lighting Levels to Your Child’s Preferences
Sensitivity to light can be on either end of the high/low spectrum for your child. They may need brighter and more pronounced light, or perhaps softer lighting would better suit their needs. Many times, simply drawing back the shades or installing windows that provide more natural sunlight can be the best way to go. Other times, blackout curtains may be more appropriate.
Place Accessories within Your Child’s Reach
For children in mobility equipment, things like switching on a light, getting clothes that are hanging up, or even reaching the top shelves in dressers can be challenging. Lowering the clothes rack in the closest, light switches, and using shorter dressers and cabinets can make a huge difference in the functionality of the room for your child.
Widen Doorframes and Hallways
Narrow entrances and walkways can become major obstacles for children using mobility devices. This is also true for parents and caregivers who need to assist the child. Consult a professional to modify the structure of the room and drastically change your family life for the better.
In addition to all the things mentioned here, there are numerous other tips and suggestions to help you and your family make sure that your home is as safe, comfortable, and functional for your child with disabilities.
About the Author
Elise Morgan is a freelance writer from North Carolina that regularly covers health, wellness, and sleep topics for Mattress Advisor. She is especially passionate about understanding and researching helpful tips to getting a great night’s sleep, and loves to educate others on the topic through her writing.