Topics that this article cover:
- What is included in a daily routine
- What a typical day of a child with special needs looks like
- How you can give your child choices
- Suggestions for equipment for sitting positioning
- G Tube and oral feedings
- Private therapy at home
- Routine in the community
- Having your child do simple chores
- Bedtime routine
What does a special needs child morning routine look like?
In the morning, a special needs child, such as Savannah starts her day with a G tube feeding and getting ready for the day. If your child eats orally, breakfast is provided.
The Power of Choices
Just like an adult and any other child, people love to make their own choices. Savannah makes choices throughout the day. For instance, she chooses her daily outfit by eye gazing her clothes after given two choices of shirts and pants. Additionally, she communicates by choosing pictures (PECS) and actual pictures of activities to participate in, learning subjects and description words such as hot or cold. https://pecsusa.com/pecs/
Lastly, she is given two choices of books to pick from to read before bed.
After each G tube feeding and snack, Savannah goes to the bathroom. In between feedings, every hour or two, she also takes a bathroom break.
Savannah receives three G tube feedings per day: at breakfast, shortly after she wakes up, lunch, and dinner.
Although she has a G tube to maintain her calorie intake and help her gain weight and grow, Savannah is fed orally in between feedings for pleasure. Additionally, most of her medications are given to her orally. A swallow study is completed every year to ensure she is swallowing properly.
G Tube Feedings
Daily, Savannah receives three G tube feedings of 400ml per day: at breakfast, shortly after she wakes up, lunch, and dinner. During her feedings, she sits up in her Yogibo, Special Tomato Chair, or car seat if we are driving somewhere in the community. Her feedings last about 45- 50 minutes.
Therapy at Home
Since Savannah was six months old, she has received physical therapy at home for a couple of hours once per week. During therapy, she is stretched, works on standing, sitting, Fine and Gross Motor Skills, and head control and weight bearing during tummy time. One significant activity Savannah frequently participates in during her home physical therapy sessions and helps her the most is walking in her Upsee by Firefly Friends. http://www.fireflyfriends.com.
Out in the Community
A couple of days per week, Savannah participates in private therapies such as Hippotherapy and Aquatherapy. In the community, we also go shopping, look for books at the Library, go out to eat, bike ride and/ or walk around our neighborhood or a local trail. During the summer months, we go to the beach, pool and zoo. Usually, she attends school a few days per week.
Savannah does simple chores such as folding socks, sweeping while walking in her walker and putting silverware away.
Shortly after her last feeding of the day, Savannah goes to the bathroom and gets ready for bed. Her teeth are flossed and brushed. To keep her from pulling out her hair and keeping her hair less tangled, her hair is Dutch or French braided at night. Then, she is given an inhaled medication through the nebulizer machine. Savannah uses the restroom a couple more times before she goes to sleep. A choice of a couple of books is provided for her to pick her story for the night. Due to Savannah having reflux and often burps, she is swung on her mama’s legs while laying down, does sit ups, and sits then stands up to ensure her burps are released.
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