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Dealing with Down's Syndrome & Bedwetting

An interview with Carly, a JOIZI Brand Ambassador, creator of The Up Side of Downs, and mum to Ollie. Follow Carly on Instagram.

Carly, what’s been your biggest parenting challenge so far?

 The biggest parenting challenge so far has to be having a child with a disability, and not knowing what the future holds. Before I had Ollie, I was never around children with special needs. I wasn't sure if I could cope with the not knowing what to do.

What’s been your biggest parenting success so far?

My biggest parenting success has to be that no matter what, you can only do your best. I always believe that slow and steady wins the race. When Ollie started walking, unaided at the age of 5, I knew that our persistence paid off.

What do you feel is most misunderstood about Down’s Syndrome?

I was always told by professionals that Ollie would never lead a normal life, and he wouldn't meet his milestones. This is a lie. Ollie leads a life, and is treated no different, like anyone else. It may take him a little longer but he has reached milestones that any other child has reached.

What’s your #1 parenting product and why?

PeapodMats are definitely our go-to parenting product. This mat has changed our lives and I only wish I knew about it sooner as I could have used it so much more in various situations. This mat is a complete game changer. Ollie suffered so much with acid reflux when he was younger and would be sick all the time, this mat would have saved my furniture and carpets.

Do you have a go-to parenting book / resource?

My biggest parenting resource has to be social media and the Down's Syndrome groups I'm in. Other parents help so much when they are living the same life as you. Never be afraid to ask for help.

What do you do to make sure your child is comfortable overnight?

Every night Ollie has a shower before bed, his jammies are on the radiator so they are nice and warm for him (in the colder weather). Ollie has his v-shaped pillow for extra comfort and always goes to bed with a beaker of milk.

Do you have any toilet training tips?

Our toilet training journey has been long and hard, but we can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. I started toilet training Ollie when I believed he was ready, and for Ollie, that was at the age of 6. My parenting tip is that for us we started it in the 6 weeks summer holidays so my attention was on him and we could really crack this out. Schools are busy enough as it is, so I didn't want them to take most of the responsibility. Don't force it on your child and never tell them off for an accident. I always made a huge fuss of Ollie when he used the potty to encourage him more.

What’s your bedtime routine?

Ollie can usually go to bed anywhere from 5.45-7pm. It all depends on what mood he's in / how tired he is. Ollie will tell me when he wants to go to bed. It's never after 7pm because this boy loves his bed, and his sleep. Ollie will either have a bath or a shower before bed, warm jammies on, a beaker full of milk, and he enjoys to watch his iPad in bed for a bit to unwind and chill out. Because of Ollie's poor eyesight, sadly, he can't see the TV in his room so this is the reason for his iPad. Ollie can wake up anytime from 7am-9.30am. We get up at 7am on a school day. Ollie has always loved his sleep and his bed. His bed has become his safe place. 

When did you start sharing your journey on social media, and why?

I have always wanted to share Ollie's life and journey on social media to show that Down's Syndrome isn't scary, you can't catch it and most of the stigma is old wife's tales that aren't true, and are actually crazy. I wanted to meet new people who are living in the same boat, make new friends and encourage each other. We started sharing Ollie's life late last year. I wanted to do it when he was younger but all the hospital appointments, surgeries and how poorly he was, was all too much and I knew I couldn't fully commit myself. I also didn't want to show a scary side to having a child with Down's Syndrome. In the beginning with how poorly he was, it was super scary for me and I didn't know how to deal with it myself. So I bit the bullet and I haven't looked back. 

What has surprised you most about being a parenting blogger/influencer?

What has surprised me the most is that we have met some amazing people, how everyone's life is completely different, and how each child excels differently. Just because they share the same diagnosis doesn't make them the same person. Also how we have only experienced good things on social media! Social media can be a weird place and also a scary place, because of trolls, but lucky enough for us we haven't experienced that.

 

Carly's review of PeapodMats

Excellent product and customer service. This 100% works and has been a complete game changer in our household. Waterproof, soft and breathable. I recommend this to anyone who's child struggles with bed wetting, just like my child. You will not find anything better than this, I have tried xx

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★ Reviews

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99 reviews
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I bought the large one for when my grandaughter came out of nappies, she is a fidgety sleeper and this has not move. I now have a second one for her little sister both are excellent. Saves my mattresses on new bed and stay in place for a comfortable sleep. Can’t Recommend enough. Brilliant!

Peapods are an absolute life saver. I have both the large and the medium.
With a urostomy it’s inevitable there will be leaks; just a fact of life.
Having one of these on the bed does away with the stress of airing the mattress etc when “a big one” happens.
It doesn’t feel clinical and thankfully doesn’t give that horrible sweaty feeling others do.
Amazing amazing amazing!

Hi GG, it's great to hear that you're happy with PeapodMats and that they take the stress away for you. Thank you for a great review. All the best, Team JOIZI

Absolutely incredible! We used to buy at least 2-3 new mattresses a year! This magical matt has saved us so much money. Never leaks and lovely soft towel texture. Highly recommend for mummy's or adults with incontinence issues.

Hi Aimee, thank you for your lovely review and recommending PeapodMats to others! It's great to hear that PeapodMat helped you save money on mattresses and you love its leakproof qualities! All the best, Team JOIZI

I purchased 2 of the medium sized Peapods (after a personal recommendation and then reading the excellent reviews) for my partners bed, she has incontinence due to early onset dementia. I am generally pleased with their performance and they have made life easier in this situation. However, usually a small amount of urine does pass through the Peapod with the result that I back it up with two layers of normal towels underneath to absorb this small excess. This system works well and the bed sheet always seems to be dry. It is for this reason that I have given 4 stars.
I would still say that they are worth the cost, obviously I alternate the two Peapods each night and am thinking of getting a third one as extra backup.

Hi David, thank you so much for your review and your lovely words about PeapodMats! Because PeapodMats are breathable (but leak proof) the water from urine may evaporate, causing the sheet underneath to feel cool to touch and giving it a damp feeling. Please also be advised that we generally recommend large size of PeapodMats for adults. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to get in touch with us at hello@joizi.com.

After doing loads of research, we purchased a medium sized PeapodMat for my son who is still in pull-ups at night age 5 and a half! We're two nights in and there have been accidents both nights but the mat has worked - it didn't move around in the night and the sheet underneath remained dry so the matress is well-protected.

Hi Hannah, thank you for a great review. We're so happy to hear that PeapodMat has protected your little one's bed so well and stays in place all night. We wish you and your family all the best, Team JOIZI