When going to the beach or the pool there are so many things to consider. Will it be too hot? Will the water be too cold? Are there ways to make it easier for my child to have fun and participate safely? So many questions and unknowns.
Here are some ideas to make your adventures run smoothly when headed out to the beach or pool this summer!
Sun and Heat Protection
Sunscreen is a must! Given that it is difficult for our children to let us know they are getting adversely affected by the sun, make sure to apply sunscreen often and stay in the shade when possible. Make sure to keep your loved one, and yourself, hydrated. Wear loose fitting and lightweight clothing if possible.
For the times when you are not playing in the water it may be handy to have a misting fan or cooling cloths to keep cool. Temperature regulation is such a challenge for those with Rett in the summer months, they can get over heated and you may not even notice. Some common signs are reddening of the cheeks and becoming lethargic so be on the lookout.
What if the water is too cold?
No matter the temperature outside, if the water is shockingly cold it may be difficult for your child to enjoy their time swimming. A great way to help regulate their body temperature is by dressing them in a wetsuit! This may seem odd, in warm weather, given that most wetsuits have long sleeves and pant legs.
However, once your child goes into the cool water the wetsuit will help by keeping your loved one insulated. It may take a bit more effort to get your child dressed, but if the wetsuit has a bit of wiggle room it makes for more ease getting it on and off.
Support while swimming
Swimming can be so fun for our loved ones, the feeling of weightlessness and the resistance in the water makes for great therapy, even while having fun! Giving your child a bit of independence in the pool can be so liberating for them.
A flotation device, whether it be a fully supportive float that situates along their mid-line, an upper body float, or a float for relaxation that is meant to allow them to have more movement so they can swim as they wish, may be the best thing you buy for them this summer!
Privacy, Quiet Time and Personal Needs
The beach or the pool can be a bit overwhelming depending on the day and time you go. It may be tricky to navigate when your child wants to rest or needs some personal care. If space allows a lightweight, and rather easy to assemble, option for shade and privacy is a “Sport-Brella”. This umbrella can anchor into grass or sand with ease and one-person assembly. A comfortable place to change clothes, provide personal care or take a comfortable nap is paramount. Bringing along a collapsible cot/lounge chair can prolong your stay on any outdoor outing!
Often times a little extra security, for our loved one’s, while in the water is always good to have. Whether you are a young swimmer or a bit older, disposable swimmers can provide that bit of reassurance just to make sure that your day goes a bit more smoothly!
Medications are a necessity for many. Make sure to plan ahead and have a medicine bag or mini cooler that you are able to stock for the day’s outing. In case of emergency, it’s always a good idea to bring your emergency medication, if your child may require them. Have your loved one’s full days’ worth of medications in the bag/cooler with you on the go. No need to add the stress of hurrying home to take medicine!
Cooler (click image below)
The pool and the beach can be so much fun for our loved ones, the sound of the ocean waves, the feeling of the water, the sand between their toes. Time at the pool or beach can be so calming, and thoroughly enjoyable for many-let’s make the most of it this summer!