Behaviors We Prevent

There are many causes for incontinence…ranging from Alzeimers, Dimentia, Autism, Neurological disorders, Epilepsy, Parkinsons, significant cognitive and developmental delays, increased age, stroke, surgery, spinal cord injuries, medications, childbirth, etc. Some people simply have to wear an incontinence brief, but want coverage at all times to hide their incontinence brief – we make adult onesies or preventive undergarments for that. Some need further help to prevent challenging behaviors that are associated with some of these disabilities. These challenging behaviors can be diaper digging, fecal smearing, and disrobing – we make types of child and adult special needs bodysuits for this.

If you are a caregiver of someone who has one of these challenging behaviors, such as fecal smearing or diaper digging, we know they can be some of the most challenging behaviors…you are there to help and we understand that. You want the best for them, we understand that too. Our preventive undergarments and child and adult onesies and child and adult bodysuits can help you do that job. Diaper digging and fecal smearing can leave the ones we care for and ourselves at risk for sanitary reasons. We know when it happens, it happens so fast. Turning your back for just a moment to make them a meal, or do their laundry. This can leave us feeling so confused, frustrated, and helpless.

These preventive undergarments and special needs bodysuits can help. Prevent challenging behaviors with our products. In fact, some of our customers have reported that after using the preventive undergarment, the fecal smearing, diaper digging, and disrobing behaviors stop after time! Our special needs clothing was made with you in mind! One thing that is important to us is discretion and maintaining dignity and pride. All of our special needs clothing and child and adult special needs bodysuits and child and adult onesies are made to go under any outfit. No one will know they are being worn.

Lets break down and share some of these behaviors

Part 1 – Fecal smearing:

Although I do not have the answers to why this behavior is so satisfying to our loved ones – let’s talk about it and get it out there.

Through my own experiences and through my customer’s feedback I will share what I have learned.

My daughter used to do this 3x per day before I invented Preventa Wear. I am not sure why, she had 100% of my attention at all times – her autism and epilepsy required it. I would turn my back for a second to do laundry – and I would turn back to handfuls of poop! Which would require more laundry and more clean up. I was constantly in this cycle. A caregiver first, and a mom second.

She also used to pull her diapers aside and pee on the floor.

If I didn’t smell it immediately when she went her hand went straight down the back of her pants. I don’t know where it all came from and how one little sweet human could poop so many times per day. Then god gave me a gift – I became nose blind to the smell, but then I couldn’t catch her fast enough to stop her from digging. I have so many horrific stories about when and how she did this. You wouldn’t believe it but I can look back and laugh about it now.

I am not kidding you – I created these bodysuits and onesies, put her in them, and after 2 weeks the behavior stopped! She gave up and moved on…! It seriously shifted our lives so much, giving us freedom and dignity. I have learned so much along the way from my thousands of worldwide customers who have found my website. WORLDWIDE!  THOUSANDS! We are not alone in this.

My daughter is non verbal and cannot tell me, but I believe that she was diaper digging because she was seeking smell. She loves odors – and scratch and sniff perfume ads, loves them! I think that this smell was giving her sensory input.

Sometimes I get feedback that some people only dig at night. Some love to smear it on the walls or throw it. Some people seem to get satisfaction from the way it feel in their hands, or don’t like the way it feels in their diapers so they want it out right away.

Let me share the first time my daughter did it. I have many many stories but this was the first one. The very first time…

Kyla was 3 and just learned to walk – very very busy and up all night, every night still. One late morning after a sleepless night I was exhausted. Everything in the house was safe and clean, I put a cartoon on and some toys out, and dozed off on the couch like most parents do from exhaustion. About 20 minutes later I woke up to my sweet girl giving me kisses! Kiss after kiss! I smelled something yucky, poopy. I leaned away and looked at her sweet little face and her mouth was covered in poop. Her hands too! I was so confused! I cleaned us up and that’s when it all began.

I would love to get feedback and anonymously share stories and advise on this. If you have a story or advise, please email me info@preventawear.com

I will keep your story anonymous! Let’s help each other out with these stories! Cry, Vent, Laugh…know that we are there and we have experienced this!

Part 2 – Disrobing or Stripping

Disrobing

Disrobing, Stripping, Undressing in inappropriate places; this is challenging behavior! Most times the reason why cannot be communicated by the person disrobing, but what we do know it that it happens often in many instances including Autism, Alzheimers or Dementia, Down Syndrome, Epilepsy, and many other cognitive and intellectual disabilities. It can range from taking off one garment, all garments, or just shoes and socks!

Let’s talk about it and share some stories – here are a couple of ours…

My daughter used to LOVE to be barefoot. No matter where we were, or the weather, her shoes were coming off. She has taken off her shoes and socks and ran down the road in a snowstorm squealing in delight! Most people find this painfully cold but she seemed to love it. We would have to catch her as quick as we could and warm her little feet up! She also used to take her shoes and socks off and throw them at the bus driver. My CUTE little girl did this!!! Why?!?!? I finally outsmarted her and got her Converse High Tops.

She used to love to take off her clothes too. I remember twice playing in the back yard – once she took all of her clothes off down to nothing, when I tried to get her safe back into the house or dressed she SCREAMED! It was terrible.

Another time one of her care providers was in the back yard with my daughter and she removed all of her clothes and threw them over the fence. The care provider was scrambling!

She had some instances at school too.

One of our valued customers shared a story about her father with Alzheimers in the middle of the night would get his hands in his pants, remove them, and urinate in the bed.

This is quite common with Alzheimers and Dementia.

Some theories are:

  1. The person disrobing needs to urinate and is confused and thinks they are in the bathroom but they are not. They take off their clothes and do their job!
  2. The person disrobing may have sensory issues and the clothes they are wearing may be very uncomfortable like too tight or itchy to them.
  3. The person disrobing may just love the way it feels to wear no clothes.
  4. The person disrobing may do it to fondle themselves.
  5. The person disrobing may be hallucinating thinking it is time to change for bed.

If you are experience this with a loved one, you are not alone. It is very common and so many of my customers reach out to me for answers or solutions. I created all of my products to help redirect this behavior. We have sensory friendly Onesies that snap in the crotch. They can be worn with pants and a belt to avoid disrobing. Our special needs bodysuits such as our Shorts Bodysuit that zip in the back and can be worn under anything. For ultimate protection or for those who tear their clothing off we have Anti Tear Bodysuits that are discreet and do a great job!

Part 3 – Wandering

wanderingOur clothes cannot protect from our loved ones wandering, but I want to touch on this subject because it seems to go hand in hand with the behaviors our clothing does protect against.

Wandering can be SO dangerous! What if our loved one wanders into traffic, wanders into a pond, wanders into a strangers house, there are so many threatening scenarios. This is one of the most dangerous behaviors my daughter has, and she has no fear or concept of danger which makes it so much more threatening.

I love to share stories….I love to let others know what we have experienced so they do not feel alone. I have so many stories of this subject, but I want to share 3…2 that are horrifying and one that is so outrageous but I can laugh about it now.

My first story:
Kyla, my daughter, was about 4 years old. She didn’t walk until she was 2.5 but then she just RAN! It was a rainy Saturday morning and just the two of us at home, and I decided that we should wear matching pink fuzzy robes and slippers and make pancakes! We looked like marshmallow peeps!!! Kyla was by my side but went into the living room for a second, all was safe and I was flipping pancakes watching her like a hawk. All of a sudden I heard the screen door slam. I dropped my spatula and ran to the door. No sign of my daughter. It was pouring rain out. My instinct was to listen and I heard her squealing in delight. Way off to the right I started running in my pink robe and my fuzzy slippers getting soaked! I spotted her just as she ran up a little hill and disappeared down it. I stepped on it chasing her over the hill. I spotted her again at someones side service garage door trying to open it and get in and I scooped her up and carried her home. If I would have been 30 seconds slower she would have got in, and I would not have known where she was! They would have eventually wandered into their garage and saw her who knows what in there, drinking anti freeze?  By the way she used to drink and eat everything and I still know poison control by heart. 1-800-222-1222

That is not the story I laugh about….
Next story, Kyla was with a new caregiver that didn’t head my warnings of her fleeing and gave my daughter too much trust.. Kyla just got home from school and came in through the garage, and the garage door was left open. While the caregiver was making her a snack in the kitchen, Kyla RAN out the garage door so fast. The Caregiver realized it right away and started chasing her. She was so fast she ran 6 blocks.  6 blocks! The caregiver could not catch her. She ran straight into a BUSY street. All the cars stopped thank goodness she didn’t get hit. The ONLY thing that stopped her is one of the cars had a dog in the back seat, so Kyla stuck herself to the window looking at the dog until the caregiver could get help to get her home.  How HORRIFYING!

Now – here is the one I laugh about now.
Kyla was about 7 years old, and I wanted to take her on a little vacation just the two of us to a hotel with a pool so she could swim. We checked into the hotel and walked by the pool on the way to our room on second floor. Kyla got very excited! I told her we would change and immediately go back, not sure she if understood me haha.

We got tot the room and I made sure I locked the door and I pulled out our swim gear and I started changing. I only had my bikini bottoms on and I heard the hotel room door slam. I panicked! I grabbed a towel, threw it around me and ran out the door after her. She was SCREAMING in delight barreling down the hallway. I had to run as FAST as I could to catch her. She was so noisy about this that several people opened their room doors to check out what was happening. I caught her, grabbed her little hand and marched her back to the room trying to explain we need our swim suits on first and NOT to run from me!! We made it back to the room and guess what, I locked us out! I fled the room so fast after Kyla I didn’t even think to grab a room key! There we were. I only had bikini bottoms on with a small towel wrapped around me holding on desperately to a very wiggly excited 7 year old. I had one of the other rooms call the front desk to see if they could bring me a key and they said no they were too busy! So I had to go down to the front desk like that. I was DEVASTATED! Now I can laugh about this one…

The stories I have!  I am sure if you are reading this you have some too!

I have something very important that I learned along the way. 

If you loved one wanders and is non verbal or unable to communicate where they live and who their family is – Contact your local Sheriff’s department. Many of them have GPS programs free of cost.

Project Lifesaver is one of them. Call your local Sheriff’s Department – It is the one Kyla uses. It is a GPS device she wears on her ankle, if she wanders I can call 911 immediately and they can track her quickly, even in water.

Wandering is very common in diseases that cause cognitive delays such as Alzheimers and Autism. What is more troubling is that they cannot communicate where they live. This can help so much!

Part 4 – Dropping, Plopping, and Wheelchairs?

wheelchair-behaviorsI had a conversation with a long time customer yesterday, and we talked about how our kids are so strong – almost like they have super powers. Along with this strength they will drop right down onto the ground and we cannot get them up.

I will tell a couple stories of what we have been through, and an amazing tip I have on how to overcome this unsafe behavior.

Kyla can walk and run, and she is very strong! She couldn’t stand or walk until she was over two years old because of low muscle tone and lack of balance, but then she RAN!

I would take her to the beach when she was about three years old and she would run and run and run. I would watch the other kids her age building sand castles and playing in the sand in peace, as we would run by kicking sand everywhere. Now, I had to chase her because she would run up to strangers big slurpie drinks and drink them, and then throw them, and run to the next strangers picnic, grab a cheeseburger, take a bite, and throw it, and then to the next strangers bottle of suntan lotion and try to drink it, throw it and on and on and on. This would last about 20 minutes before I would give up, scoop her up, and carry all of our beach gear and her back to the car defeated. We would try again the next weekend haha with the same results.

Kyla then discovered how to drop to the ground when she didn’t want to do something, or even if someone triggered her while we were walking simply by saying “hi”, Kyla would drop to the ground and refuse to get up. I would try to get her up and she would resist.  I call this the Alligator Roll…!

Let me break it down for you.

Alligator Roll: verb, another word for tantrum – melt down. When a child of disability is bigger than two, has non-existent bones (I call them noodle bones), and is laying on the ground screaming and rolling, you know, when an alligator is killing it’s prey rolling and rolling until it’s prey gives up the fight? That is an alligator roll. When my child is on the ground rolling and rolling each time I try to get her up, and her bones “disappear” when I try to hoist her up under the arms, and we are stuck until she decides she would like to get up and move on. Keep in mind that children with certain medical conditions such as autism have super powers, they are stronger than you could ever ever imagine, leaving the parent or caregiver with a huge adrenaline rush, heart pounding, and out of breath to get their child out of a dangerous, awkward, or time sensitive situation. People used to judge us and look at us bewildered like “control your kid.”  It broke my heart.

Kyla did this all of the time from the age of three to currently she is twenty. I had a very hard time bringing her anywhere. She would drop at any given moment. She would do this especially in grocery stores. Going in for a simple gallon of milk could take us over an hour because she would drop down in the middle of an aisle, and then scream and roll when I would try to get her up. She would finally get up and then I would have to get through line to pay. This would also happen in the parking lot on the way into the store in ALL elements.  Pouring rain, rain puddles, blazing hot sunny days, bitter cold…

I learned a very hard lessen when Kyla outgrew my strength at about the age of 12. We were visiting my sister in Minneapolis and we had to cross a busy street. My nephew came out to greet us and say “Hi” and guess what? Kyla went down in the middle of a busy street. I could not get her up. Cars stopped and tried to help, but the way she was resisting nobody could get her up. Her uncle ran out and together we were able to pick her up and carry her to safety. This was horrifying! Not only was she in danger but so was I. I felt so vulnerable to her strength and unpredictability.

We had a neurologist appointment the following week, and guess what? Kyla plopped down outside the office in the hallway. Her doctor and nurse came out to the hallway to do her appointment and I started crying, saying how I can’t even get a gallon got milk anymore. He said that a lot of people like Kyla end up riding in a wheelchair for safety. I cried harder…a wheelchair too, on top of all of the other things we have to think about??

BUT! The wheelchair has changed our lives! We got the wheelchair when Kyla was 13 years old, and look out world, we can do anything now! Kyla seems to really enjoy the chair and feels secure in it. We are always safe and can do so many things that were impossible. Also, instead of people looking at  bewildered or judgmental, people actually see us in a very different light. Now they open doors for us with smiles.

One more very cute story…We are part of a fitness club and Kyla and I love to take the Hip Hop dance class and Zumba. I wheel her into class in her wheelchair and when the music starts I unbuckle her and she stands up and starts to dance with me. People think they are witnessing a miracle! What is very cool is that people come up after class to say hi to Kyla. We make SO many friends!

She uses the chair only in public, never at home. She rides the bus to and from school in the chair and uses it most of the day at school because she plops down at school all of the time too. My goal is to NOT use the chair and have Kyla walk into the store, get an item, and get through line and safely back out to the car. I always have to have a safety back up plan when we try this, someone with us in case they need to go get the wheelchair.

If you have these challenges, ask your doctor! Wheelchairs are covered by insurance. It takes a while to get approved, but it is SO worth it to have piece of mind and safety. We also purchased a lightweight wheelchair through Amazon for less than $150.00 that is perfect for vacations and traveling. Thank goodness for our Wheelchair!