Does your child need a safe, secure space to sleep? A therapeutic bed with elevation of the head and feet can help reduce pain and alleviate sleep disturbances. However, medical equipment is expensive, and purchasing a new therapeutic bed is not always an option for parents. If you’re looking for an affordable way to make sleeping safer and easier for your child, a DIY special needs bed may be just what you need.
Before we discuss how to build a DIY special needs bed, let’s go over the basics of what makes a bed therapeutic. In general, this type of bed will have:
- A high headboard that allows elevation
- A low footboard to facilitate foot elevation
- A mattress that is easy to clean (and sterilize if necessary)
- Side rails that are at least 16 inches tall
First, you are going to want to measure the width of your child’s mattress. After getting this measurement, you will want to purchase a sheet of plywood that is a little bit wider than the mattress.
Second, you will want to measure the height of your child’s mattress. After getting this measurement, you will want to purchase 4 metal brackets that are just shorter than this measurement. You can find these at your local hardware store.
Third, you will want to assemble the frame for your bed by placing the brackets on each corner of the plywood and drilling them in. Once they are all attached, flip it over and make sure it is sturdy enough to support your child. If it feels sturdy enough, then you’re done! If not, then add some more brackets until it is sturdy enough.
The DIY special needs bed project is intended to provide information and instructions for families in need of a medical bed for their child but are unable to afford one. The project includes a complete set of plans, detailed instructions, and a bill of materials. If you have access to basic woodworking tools, an average level of skill, and some time you should be able to build this bed yourself.
The DIY special needs bed is a platform bed that has been adapted for medical use and can be adjusted for positioning. The head end, foot end, and height of the bed are all adjustable with hand cranks located on both sides of the bed. The head end can adjust 30 degrees up or 30 degrees down while the foot end can adjust 40 degrees up or 40 degrees down. Between these two adjustments there are over 1,000 different combinations of positions that can be achieved. The height of the bed can also be adjusted from 15″ to 23″.
Special needs beds are used in hospitals, nursing homes, and other health-care facilities. These beds are specially designed to prevent bedsores in patients who spend extended periods of time in bed. The mattress and frame of the bed can be adjusted, allowing the patient to be moved around without having to be lifted from the bed.
Your child deserves to have a bed of his/her own, but if he/she has special needs, you might not be able to find the right bed for them. This can be frustrating if you have no idea how to make one on your own. That is why we are here! We will give you step-by-step instructions on building a DIY special needs bed that will fit any budget and be customized to your child’s specific needs.
In order to make the bed’s main structure, you’ll need 2x6s and 2x4s. Cut the 2x6s into two equal lengths—these will be the long pieces of your box frame. From your 2x4s, cut three pieces to match the width of your box frame (Example: If you’re using a queen-size mattress, the width will be 60 inches. Cut your three 2x4s to 60 inches). These pieces will be used for support in the middle of the frame and on either end. Attach these supports using wood glue and screws.
Once you’ve constructed your box frame, attach a headboard to one end. This can be as simple as attaching a piece of plywood with wood glue and screws. At this stage, you also want to make sure that both long pieces of your box frame are flush at the headboard end. If they aren’t—for example, if one long piece is too long or short compared to the other—you may want to trim it until it is.