Oh good grief, I thought the UK was meant to be a temperate, damp country?!
Unfortunately, as climate change takes hold and the UK bakes in the second 4 day heatwave of the summer, Team V have taken shelter in our front room where it is (for now at least) mercifully cool!
Amongst the various dire weather warnings on the TV, there are few of note that are not publicised quite so readily but that if you stop to think make perfect sense.
For example, children like the Dude who use wheelchairs and have limited or no independent mobility are at a very great risk of heat stroke – they can’t seek shelter if you don’t take them to it.
Likewise, sitting in a chair all day gets very hot and sweaty; for kids like my boy who take medications that already increase their need for water during the day, the sudden increased temperatures put them at a much greater risk of heat stroke and dehydration than their peers.
The same goes for adults too.
A number of medications including SSRIs, blood pressure medications and others will also increase your risk of heatstroke.
Trust me, it isn’t worth getting sick just to soak up the sun's rays for a few days of extreme heat.
We *will* have sunny days again in the UK (promise).
Another issue for my boy is that the changes in air pressure herald an increase in seizure activity – and it’s a real doozy.
For the first day of this heatwave, the poor chap was pretty much twitching constantly, tipping into a full seizure every hour or so.
They may not look like much but they are exhausting for him. The only thing to do at this point is to try and keep him cool.
Enter, the Cool Pool.
In truth, this is simply a 2m wide, 60cm deep paddling pool bought off a well-known internet site, set up on the patio.
Thanks to its fabric cover and filter it stays clean, and the sun warms it enough to take the chill off, however, it is still a tad cool shall we say.
Perfect for when the temperature is +30C and you are an 11-year-old chap who feels like he’s melting.
Mum and Dad are quite big fans too.
Forget the expensive SN equipment for a moment; this paddling pool has quite simply been the greatest investment of the past few years.
The Dudes gantry hoist fits over it allowing easy depositing/removal of said small person, hopefully meaning we’ll get a few years of use out of it.
The support of the water allows him the freedom to move independently, something that gives him immense joy, and the resistance it provides helps exercise his muscles building his strength.
Best of all, he loves being in it so it’s physiotherapy in disguise – our favourite kind!
If like us you have a child who hates the heat but loves the water, the boy and I cannot recommend this strongly enough.