For any child, getting dressed can be a frustrating, long process. This can be especially true for children with special needs. They may feel a lack of independence because they can not dress themselves or they may give up when trying to dress themselves. There are products and adaptive clothing that can help your child get dressed and may ease the frustration. We put together a few items that may help your child get dressed on their own.
Tying shoes can be an extremely difficult task to any child. For a child with special needs, they may not understand the process or have the motor skills to tie their shoes. Elastic shoelaces can solve this problem. An adult can replace the lace on any shoe with the elastic lace and then tie it to the tightness needed. The child won’t have to retie, they can just slip in and out of the shoes. This will give your child a sense of independence and may make it easier to put their own shoes on (or just save the parent some time).
Belts can be another challenge for children. Belts called “Leather Myself Belts” may be able to help your child. While an adult is still recommended for putting the belt on for the child, the child will be able to fasten and unfasten it. This belt uses Velcro, which makes it easier than the traditional belt. This can help your child when they use the restroom or when they get undressed. The belt may be able to give your child some more independence.
A tool that can help your child dress is the button hook and zipper pull hook. Buttons and zippers can be complicated for children and this tool may make it easier. It is designed for people who have fine motor problems and can make it less of a challenge to button shirts or zip up jackets (or pants) for your child. This can be a great tool to give your child more independence and allow them to have the opportunity to try to dress themselves.
Elastic waist pants can help your child put on pants. It will allow for more stretching, which denim pants normally don’t allow. The website linked even lets you choose what extra things you may need, including a Velcro fly, or side openings. Elastic pants could make it easier for your child to put on their pants in the morning.
Velcro flys and snaps can be extremely helpful for children. Eliminate the zipper completely on pants and jackets. Snaps still may be a challenge for some children, but you can always try Velcro. Another handy tip, is Velcro flaps on shirt shoulders or pants. This will help give the child more wiggly-room while putting clothes on and taking them off. Plus, they can always Velcro the flaps back together when they are done. Velcro and snaps can be an easy way to help your child dress and give them a little more independence.
Finding products that can give your child some independence when getting dressed can be a challenge. It is important to find these products so your child may be less frustrated while getting dressed. Elastic shoelaces, button hook and zipper pull hooks, and Velcro are a couple items that may work for your child. Don’t be afraid to try out a bunch of different products until you find something that will work for your child. We hope that a product or two highlighted in this blog may work for your child. If you have any suggestions on products that will help children get dressed, please submit it through a comment.