If you’re a regular reader then you may know that Gabe managed to break a bone in his foot by jumping off the sofa a couple of weeks ago. After a bedtime trip to A & E he ended up in a plaster cast to below his knee. We were actually really lucky that it healed quickly and he only had the cast on for 11 days but I thought I’d share a few tips for coping with a toddler in a plaster cast.
First up, I just want to say a massive hat’s off to any parent who has had a child in a plaster cast for any length of time. I know 11 days is nothing really and lots of children have to be in casts for weeks if not months, so I’m not claiming to be an expert but I just wanted to share a few things that helped us.
Gabe got some slipper socks for Christmas (you know the fluffy kind with the sticky bits on the soles) and they were perfect for popping on over his cast to keep his toes warm. And actually, seeing as he couldn’t walk we didn’t bother putting a shoe on the other foot and just put the other sock on that one too.
Waterproof cast cover
To be honest, for the short time Gabe had his cast on we probably could have managed not to get it wet, but having a waterproof cast cover meant he didn’t have to miss his swimming lessons and he could still have a bath. We were lucky that the lovely people at Bloccs were able to send us a cast cover (and some fab stickers too) – they come in all different sizes and for different limbs too. Gabe used the lower leg cover for age 1-3 – it was really easy to get on and kept his cast completely dry in the pool and the bath. They are prefect for the bath or shower, and would be invaluable if you had a child in a cast for a long time.
I can imagine if your child (or you) broke a bone just before a holiday then these cast protectors would be an absolute lifesaver too! Just a note though, it isn’t recommended to actually swim with a leg cast as the weight of the cast can affect buoyancy and mobility but as I hold Gabe for the whole time he is in the water I felt it was safe for him to use it.
Lots of indoor activities
Gabe wasn’t supposed to bear weight on his foot (although he was doing after about a week), and although we could take him out in the buggy it just made him grumpy because he wanted to be walking. That meant we spent a lot of time in the house. I’ll admit he did watch quite a lot of TV (and developed a slightly unhealthy obsession with Team Umizoomi) but we did lots of jigsaws, colouring, sticker books, reading and playing games like snakes & ladders and bingo too. Keeping Gabe occupied meant he was distracted from his cast and we got through the time he had it on with relatively little frustration.
Small pillow or cushion
When Gabe was sitting on the sofa I popped a small cushion under his leg to keep it more comfortable. I also did the same in bed – Gabe always sleeps on his side, with his plastered leg on top, so a small pillow under his leg kept the weight off it a bit and thankfully his sleep wasn’t too disturbed.
I’m sure there are plenty of other tips for coping with a toddler in plaster cast – if you have any please do share them in the comments. And if you currently have a child in plaster then good luck, and I hope it’s over for you quickly!
**We were sent the Bloccs waterproof cast protector for inclusion in this post. As ever all opinions are my own.