Mattresses — Scope | Disability forum


liv Member Posts: 16 Listener
edited September 2014 in Aids, adaptations, and equipment
Hi there, this might seem like a strange question but I wondered if anyone had any advice on a of my twin boys was diagnosed with cp at 7 months old and they are now 16 mths. We are about to change their cot bed mattresses and I'm not sure whether or not I should be getting some kind of extra supportive one or not? I have asked our OT and Physio but they were unable to advise.

Has anyone tried anything in particular? My little boy gets quite stiff and also has that 'turtle on it's back' reflex when he lies on his back and therefore sleeps on his side or his tum. I wondered if a memory foam or sprung base would help him?

Any ideas or experiences woul be a great help. Thanks.....


  • renacahill
    renacahill Member Posts: 145
    My daughter, who's little boy has CP, has been invited by the physio to look at a CD of a special sleep system for CP children, it is to help them avoid stiffness and spasms. I think it is quite expensive but I will ask her to post here to let you know the ins and out of it. It is a specialist item and looking for the physio dept to fund if it is suitable. DGS can sleep on his back/front/side but whenever he shuffles to turn over he wakes himself up (v light sleeper). My daughter is more looking for something to help him sleep through the night! We are not sure if he is uncomfortable or whether he just sleeps lightly - probably a bit of both.
  • liv
    liv Member Posts: 16 Listener
    Thank you, that's very kind of you. I think we have a similar issue with the 'not sleeping through the night' due to him waking himself up when he moves around. I'll look forward to hearing about it.
  • renacahill
    renacahill Member Posts: 145
    My daughter and her husband went to see the powerpoint regarding the 'sleep system' on wednesday. I didn't see it but she said it was designed to gradually move a child onto a back lying position with the legs open to help prevent hip problems. It used lots of foam wedges to ease the child gradually from front to side lying, to back. The aim is to prevent deformities, hip dislocation, twisted spine and that type of thing that children with spastic cp (quad and diplegia) can get. To be honest DGS (21 months) doesn't seem that badly affected and when he is asleep, although diagnosed spastic quad, when asleep and relaxed you can put his arms and legs anywhere!

    His sleeping problem is getting off to sleep, cannot self soothe,( bf or in a sling) Once asleep needs to lie half on and half off my daughter (co sleeping) wakes very frequently, sometimes an hour at a time, if he wants to move it seems to wake him up, or just gets very light and wakes anyway. He'll either grizzle or want to play! He has melatonin at night which doesn't keep him asleep but makes him a bit dopey for an hour, has never had a sleep pattern. My daughter is not prepared to leave him to cry as he gets so upset and went through a few months of minor fits,(now hopefully outgrown for good-none for months-but this has traumatised us all!!)

    When he naps in the day (20 mins - 2 hours) its variable, but we have seen him drop off to sleep after waking as we spy on him with a video monitor, so he can do it!. He has always been an incredibly light sleeper and will wake at the slightest noise, also if he goes to sleep in our arms its almost impossible to place him in his cot (currently in the attic!) without waking. We dont think he has spasms that wake him, never seen that, though the consultant suggested baclofen at night only to relax him. Daughter not keen as she read it can lower the threshold for fits. He can roll over when awake when he thinks about it but could he do it in his sleep in a natural rexaxed way? Does he need to wake for this? We dont know.

    We dont know if his sleeping problem is that much to do with the cp to be honest except that because he is not independently mobile at the moment he doesn't use up that much energy so getting actually tired.
    My daughter doesnt think the sleep system is what he needs, so will not be taking this up at present but we are looking to gradually reintroducing a proper sleep regime using his cot in the day initially, then ? at night. We're going to read up on sleep training and see where we go!

  • b8s
    b8s Member Posts: 33
    My daughter has been provided with a special electric bed, similar to the ones used in hospital, and a sleep system. This was all organised by our O/T, when she grew out of her moses basket (18mths old), she sleeps through the night, but she wriggles a lot so we go in and check her position twice. There are lots of postural sleep systems available and your O/T should be able to make arrangements for various reps to come out and show you them, they are NHS funded so shouldn't have a problem with that either. I hope this helps, sleep is so important to you and your child.