Welcome to family friendly fun and disability support for families with special needs. Discover family fun and recreation, family health and wellness, family life and relationships, and disability support for families with special needs
This website is dedicated to my daughter Monica, who was born with a neural tube defect, called an occipital encephalocele. Despite multiple disabilities, including cortical blindness, cerebral palsy, developmental delays, and a complex partial seizure disorder, Monica continues to explore, learn and enjoy life. Monica is a delight and inspiration to all that know her. We hope that this website will provide hope and support for other families with special needs.
Articles wanted - Do you offer a service, write articles, or publish a website related to family friendly fun and disability support for families with special needs? Our visitors will want to know about it. Submit an article for review and we may publish it on its own new webpage on this family friendly website! Excerpts from some recent articles -
Container gardening is one of the fastest growing segments of gardening. Containers can be grown where traditional gardens are not possible including apartment balconies, small courtyards, decks, and patios. They are an ideal solution for people in rental situations, with limited mobility, or with limited time to care for a large landscape.
•Guide for individuals with disabilities in buying a home. Learn the important steps in buying a home, home mortgages, and financial assistance programs that are available for individuals with disabilities.
•Do you need long term disability insurance? Nobody likes to think about what life would look like should disability strike. But the reality is one third of all Americans between the ages 35 and 65 will become disabled for more than 90 days. One in seven workers will be disabled for more than five years. While many people think that disabilities are typically caused by accidents, the majority of long-term absences are actually due to illnesses, such as cancer and heart disease. The loss of income can be so devastating that it forces some people to foreclose on their home or declare bankruptcy.
•For families with one or more disabled or challenged children, it is important that family traditions include all members, regardless of their abilities. Finding creative ways to include both children with disabilities and their siblings in activities that everyone can enjoy is part of building a strong, cohesive family unit.
•Framercise - low impact walker exercise for whole body fitness. Framercise means exercising using a walking frame, otherwise know as a walker without wheels. Many disabled and elderly people attend low impact exercise sessions to keep their bodies and general health in good order. Here is another way to exercise at home using a simple walking frame
•Special Education Art by Helen Goren Shafton - Art is important to the development of all children, but it is particularly valuable to children with disabilities. When creating art, the child is building a wide variety of skills – both motor and cognitive. The various sensory experiences involved in art production are positive and pleasurable sensations. Additionally, the creative process provides opportunities for expressing ideas and emotions, which can sometimes be difficult for the child with disabilities.
•No child who has experienced trauma is going to heal and learn to use different ways of coping without first feeling secure. The importance of environmental interventions is essential, in terms of providing the stable and safe place from which therapeutic work can be undertaken. Dissociation is a common component of the complex trauma response - Amongst those committing the most serious of crimes, over 90% experienced childhood trauma in the form of abuse and / or loss and frequently both. A link has been found between sexual abuse and the occurrence of drug abuse, juvenile delinquency and criminal behaviour a few years later.
•Developing childrens motor skills are important when they are very young. Teaching your child these motor skills in the form of a craft or a game allows him or her to learn while also having family fun. Learning these skills will help make them better prepared for when they go off to school and will help them succeed, so play and play often. Developing motor skills doesn’t require doing drills over and over. They can be fun and creative. If the craft or activity is something your child looks forward to doing, they’ll want to keep practicing so they can do better.
•Home safety for your special-needs child - Just as with any child, it’s important to make your home as safe as possible for your special-needs son or daughter. If you have a special needs child at home, you’ll know that as well as the rewards it can also be challenging at times. Just as with any child, it’s important to secure your home to make it as safe as possible for your son or daughter, avoiding the usual bumps and bruises associated with growing up. As any parent soon discovers, children have an unswerving knack of finding the sharpest corners, most slippery surfaces and valuable ornaments to play with, and keeping an eye on your busy baby, toddler or child is tough at the best of times. However, supporting a child with special needs can pop another dimension in to the mix – not only do we have to make sure that the house is safe and secure, but we also need to find as many ways as possible to make their lives easier as well as the environment safer. So, here’s the lowdown on the best aids on the market at the moment, for making life safer, easier and more comfortable for your child.
•Coping with stress for parents of children with disabilities. Parental psychological stressors are related to the worries that parents have about the physical safety and the growth and development of their children. When a child is diagnosed with disabilities, all of the attention is focused on helping the child. But parents also need assistance in coping with stress, their own feelings and frustrations. Parents of children with disabilities had very elevated scores on the Parenting Stress Index, signifying that they perceived far more stress in their role as parents than did parents of children without disabilities. A model for teaching parents how to cope with the stress associated with raising children with disabilities was developed. The basic premise of the model is that by increasing coping skills, parents can reduce their own stress and can become effective mediators in reducing stress in their children.
•As health care reform comes to pass, there is a building momentum towards keeping patients in their homes whenever possible. Home care is quickly becoming an integral part of the care continuum. The primary population creating a demand for home care is seniors. As 78 million Baby Boomers approach retirement age, U.S. demographics are shifting significantly. Seniors 65 and older will soon constitute 20 percent of the population. And it’s estimated that by the year 2020, 12 million older Americans will need long-term care. In addition to the senior niche, home care serves people of all ages who are recovering from health challenges, disabled, chronically ill or in need of end-of-life care. Their ongoing needs may be medical, nursing, therapeutic or just assistance with the basic activities of daily living. Home care ranges from a one-hour weekly visit to 24-hour care.
•When our children have special needs, traveling becomes more difficult to plan and research, but it can be full of surprises and memories you won't have wanted to miss. Use this guide to travelling with special needs children. Traveling with our children can be educational, magical and down right crazy. In the best of circumstances I would say a family of 4 can expect one meltdown by one person a day, if we are lucky! Children love to travel and soak up so much when we take them places. When our children have special needs, the traveling becomes more difficult to plan and research, but it can be full of surprises and memories you won't have wanted to miss. No matter where your family goes the best way to travel with our children is to research and plan extensively. Knowing what to expect is essential for everyone. There are family vacation specialist out there that can help you plan the perfect vacation to meet the needs of your child, at no cost at all to you.
•A message from Mary - one of our website visitors: "I am an adult with mild CP. I wanted to let you know that I've tried a LOT of things to make movement easier and one of the best has been music therapy." All children can be helped to learn to enjoy and to become involved in music to some extent. Music therapy can be of inestimable value for children who have difficulties in hearing, seeing, moving, thinking or responding. A single instrument can possess qualities of sound and tone irresistible enough to reach a child in a direct, uncomplicated manner. Children who experience severe obstacles in forming relationships with other children, adults and their environment can achieve security and joy in making music.
•Family fun brings not only enjoyment but BIG family health benefits, too. And if you look carefully, you can find fun in whatever you do... it is only a matter of attitude. Enhance your family fun today! And if you look carefully, you can find fun in whatever you do... it's all a matter of attitude. Taking time for the things that you enjoy can help you feel better about yourself and be more satisfied with life. And when you feel this way, you might be more likely to exercise, eat well, get regular medical care and reach out to friends and family - all of which can benefit you physically and mentally. People often spend a lot of time doing things that don't really benefit their health, such as watching television. Try eliminating some of these isolative, non-social activities from your day. You'll find you then have more time for doing things you enjoy that also will benefit your health.
•Children can have strokes, often caused by birth defects, infections (e.g. meningitis, encephalitis), trauma, and blood disorders such as sickle cell disease. Even though it seems unthinkable, children can have strokes, too! Adult strokes are often caused by high blood pressure, high cholesterol, a history of smoking, too much alcohol and obesity. Children’s strokes, on the other hand, are often caused by birth defects, infections (e.g. meningitis, encephalitis), trauma, and blood disorders such as sickle cell disease. Children who have suffered a stroke may often have problems with speech and communication (aphasia and dysphagia) as well as visual problems such as trouble with visual perception. There are stroke-related disabilities that are unique to children such as cerebral palsy, mental retardation and epilepsy. Some common complications for children who have suffered a stroke are: fever, change of mental status (i.e.- loss of emotional control; changes in memory, judgment or problem solving); changes in behavior such as improper language or actions; poor nutrition and conditions that result from prolonged bedrest.
•Developmental age-appropriate toys - When choosing toys for your child, it is important to consider developmental age. If your child has been diagnosed with a developmental disability or delay, her pediatrician, speech therapist, teacher, and occupational and physical therapists can offer suggestions on the types of developmental toys that will be most beneficial. In general, look for toys at or slightly above your child's skill level. It is important to have toys that can be successfully play with as well as those that challenge. Challenge should be fun and stimulating; not frustrating.